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THIS DRA WING OF Dr. David Caldwell's Log College is an 
artist's conception of the first schoolhouse located in Guil- 
ford County for the sole purpose of educational advance- 
ment. The Log College was situated on a country high- 
way, now a street known as Hobbs Road within the City 
of Greensboro. In the late eighteenth century, this area 
of North Carolina was sparsely settled, there were no 
public schools, and instruction in the basic fundamen- 
tals of education was available only in private homes or 
in the churches. At the Log College, which was a classical 
school, some students prepared for college or university 
entrance, while others advanced in the pursuit of their 
chosen life work. Here Dr. Caldwell taught young men 
for almost fifty years, and many of them later became 
eminent citizens of the nation. 


NO MAN CAN HA VE a finer memorial than 
the living monument of his life and work. 
This is especially true of Dr. David Caldwell, 
whose selfless contribution inspired the lives 
of all whom he touched and continues to in- 
spire the lives of generation after generation. 

Media, Inc., Printers and Publishers 
Greensboro, North Carolina 

Copyright © 1976 Ethel Stephens Arnett 
Except by a reviewer, no part of this book may be 
reproduced without permission in writing from the 

Library of Congress Catalog Card Number : 75-39306 
Printed in the United States of America. 


t>u, S. 

THIS BOOK IS PUBLISHED by the Junior League of Greens- 
boro, Inc., in honor of the American Revolution Bicen- 
tennial Celebration and is dedicated to the David Cald- 
well Log College, Inc., and its supporters, in apprecia- 
tion of their efforts to preserve the sites of the David Cald- 
well home and the David Caldwell Log College. 

Profits from the sales of the book are being given to 
the David Caldwell Log College, Inc., to be used for the 
purchase of the land on which these sites are believed to 
have been located. 

The Junior League expresses special appreciation to 
the author, Ethel Stephens Arnett, who has generously 
donated the manuscript of this book as her contribution 
to the preservation efforts. 

Mrs. Arnett, Historian of the City of Greensboro, is 
the author of nine books and is the recipient of twenty- 
two writing awards, including the coveted Mayflower 
Cup for William Swaim, Fighting Editor: The Story of 
O. Henry's Grandfather. A Georgia native, she is a grad- 
uate of Shorter College and holds a degree of Doctor of 
Letters from the University of North Carolina at Greens- 



"IT IS SAID that [David Caldwell] was never known to be 
in a passion, to show a revengeful spirit, or to lose his self 
possession; but the most striking trait in his character, 
perhaps, was that of overcoming evil with good ; and so 
much was this a habit with him as to give rise and curren- 
cy to the remark that no man ever did Dr. Caldwell an in- 
jury without receiving some expression of kindness in 
return. Such a man could not live in vain: and he, being 
dead, yet speaketh. " These are the concluding words of A 
Sketch of the Life and Character of the Rev. David Cald- 
well, D.D., by the Rev. E. W. Caruthers, A.M. 

As Dr. Caldwell approached his hundredth year of 
life, he realized the wisdom of introducing to his 
congregations of Buffalo and Alamance Churches a per- 
son who could become their able pastor. He therefore ap- 
proved of the Rev. Eli W. Caruthers for this responsible 
position and the combined active services of these two 
ministers covered a span of over eighty years. As long as 
Dr. and Mrs. Caldwell lived, the new minister was in- 
timately associated with them, and he learned firsthand 
from them most of the information he later preserved for 
posterity in his Caldwell biography. 

Furthermore, Caruthers wrote additional books and 
unpublished manuscripts which throw historic lights on 
the situation of the country in which the Caldwells lived. 
So far as is now known his writings are the most reliable 
sources of information on the David Caldwell family 
during David's lifetime. 

This brief account of David and Rachel Caldwell 
is mainly based on Caruthers' writings, with occasional 
references to later authors, who have now and then gath- 
ered thoughts from the ever-widening current of the 
Caldwells' inspiration. 

For assistance in the preparation of this piece, I am 
deeply indebted to Dr. Marvin L. Skaggs, Emeritus Head 


of the Department of History and Government, Greens- 
boro College, who read the galley proof for historical ac- 
curacy; to Sarah Garvin, a former member of the Rachel 
Caldwell Chapter of DAR, who was the Organizing 
Regent of the Col. Arthur Forbis Chapter of DAR and 
through that chapter initiated the movement for 
establishing a David Caldwell Memorial Park (see page 
98) ; to members of the Guilford Battle and Rachel 
Caldwell Chapters of DAR, who graciously supported this 
undertaking; to the David Caldwell Log College, Inc., 
which was then organized for the purpose of promoting 
this memorial as a community project ; to representatives 
of the David Caldwell Log College, Inc.— Emma Avery 
Jeffress, President, and Millie King, Treasurer — who 
made suggestions for this writing from the viewpoint of 
the reader; to Alice Abel, a lineal Caldwell descendant, 
who aided in connection with family history; to the 
Junior League of Greensboro, Inc., which assumed the 
responsibility of publishing this work and appointed Kate 
Cloninger as its representative to approve the writing and 
plan of this book and to assist with its publication; to 
Virginia D. Powell, Emeritus Member of the English 
Faculty of Grimsley High School and for 22 years Director 
of the Yearbook of that school, who made suggestions for 
clarity of composition ; to Anne McKaughan Farrell, who 
gave expert technical assistance with the illustrations ; to 
Louise S. Gillespie, who, from the late Rev. Dr. E.E. 
Gillespie's estate, furnished some very rare unpublished 
Caldwell family records which threw light on David Cald- 
well's confused parentage; and to Laura G. Lundgren, 
Librarian of the Lancaster County Historical Society of 
Pennsylvania, who supplied much valuable information 
on David and Rachel Caldwell's families while they lived 
in Lancaster County, and these records cleared the un- 
solved mystery of David Caldwell's parents (see page 

— Ethel Stephens Arnett 



David Caldwell's Log College frontispiece 

Alamance Presbyterian Church 10 

American Revolutionary Drum 48 

American Revolutionary Flag 48 

Battleground at Guilford Court House 46 

Birthplace of North Carolina Constitution 32 

Buffalo Presbyterian Church 8 

Cavalry at the Battle of Guilford Court House 52 

Charles, Lord Cornwallis 44 

Cornwallis Persimmon Tree 44 

Francis McNairy House 50 

General Nathanael Greene 43 

In Memory of David Caldwell 57 

Liberty Oak 43 

Map of North Carolina 13 

Monument to Peter Francisco 48 

Pequea Presbyterian Church 61 

Residence of David and Rachel Caldwell 71 

Tombs of David and Rachel Caldwell 88 

Village of Guilford Court House 47 













INDEX 103 




David CALDWELL "seemed to live to do good," wrote 
his intimate friend and former student, Governor John 
Motley Morehead. "He was a man of admirable temper, 
fond of indulging in playful remarks, which he often 
pointed with a moral, kind to a fault to every human 
being, and I might say to every living creature, entitled to 

In order to live such an exemplary life, David Cald- 
well had prepared himself to face whatever circumstances 
might confront him. Born March 22, 1725, he and three 
younger brothers — Andrew, Alexander, and John — were 
the only children of Andrew and Martha Caldwell, who 
were successful, respectable farmers of Drumore Town- 
ship, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania (see page 94) . Lit- 
tle is known about David's early life, except the fact that 
in his youth his father, who wished to see his son prepared 
to earn an honest living, apprenticed him to a house car- 
penter until he would reach manhood on his twenty-first 

Although then free to do as he pleased, David con- 
tinued to follow the carpenter's trade until his twenty- 



fifth year, when he became deeply interested in religion. 
This new insight gave his life a different meaning and he 
expressed a desire to become a Presbyterian minister. 

From the time of his changed future outlook his 
dominant craving was to grow in knowledge and un- 
derstanding, because he had great respect for the high in- 
tellectual standards which the Presbyterian Church had 
set for its ministers. So convinced was he that he should 
undertake this calling that he was moved to ask his three 
younger brothers to help him obtain the education that 
he would need for rendering this service. He therefore 
proposed that if they would furnish the money necessary 
to carry him through college he would relinquish all 
claims to any share of the parental estate. This speaks for 
itself of the high value which he placed on education, for 
his portion of inheritance would have been double the 
amount which the brothers would be required to furnish ; 
and they accepted the proposition without any hesitation 
or written agreement. 

With this plan agreed upon, David Caldwell at- 
tended the Rev. Robert Smith's classical school and the 
Log College of William Tennent, Sr., at Neshaminy, 
Pennsylvania, taught school himself for a year or two, 
then entered the College of New Jersey, (Princeton 
University after 1896). It is meaningful to observe that 
the presidents of the three institutions he attended were 
followers of the Rev. George W 7 hitefield (1714-1770) , an 
English religious leader, a great evangelist, who came to 
America seven times and preached his new theology. At 
this time Caldwell's primary concern was to obtain the 



best education that this country had to offer; and one of 
his observers wrote : "He frequently studied all night — sit- 
ting up with his clothes on — nothing daunted him, for he 
had a great vision and an insatiable desire for learning. " 
In 1761, at age thirty-six, he graduated from the College 
of New Jersey. 

His thirst for learning, however, was not satisfied. 
After graduation Caldwell taught school for a year at 
Cape May and at the same time privately continued in 
advanced theological studies. The next year he returned 
to his college where he was engaged as a tutor and 
assistant teacher in the Department of Languages. He 
worked in these temporary jobs in order to help support 
himself while he continued in graduate studies to prepare 
for the rigid examinations required by the Presbyterian 
Church for obtaining a license to preach. 

In September, 1762, he offered himself to be taken 
on trial as a candidate for the gospel ministry, and he an- 
swered so convincingly all questions asked about his 
desire to become a minister that he was welcomed into 
the field of Christian brotherhood by the Presbytery of 
New Brunswick. 

In September, 1762, he was given his final exam- 
ination assignments which were to be met within the 
next ten and a half months: "The subject assigned him 
for a Latin Exegesis was the Perseverance of the Saints." 
Next he was given a thorough examination on the Arts 
and Sciences; and in 1763 he was scheduled to preach 
four trial sermons. On August 16, when he stood up to 
deliver the last one, he surprised his audience by first 


singing a hymn and then delivering the message. Within 
two days he was licensed to preach the gospel and was ap- 
pointed to serve as a supply pastor at Hardwick, Oxford, 
and Mansfield Churches until the next meeting of the 
Presbytery. About two months later he was appointed by 
the Presbytery to supply at New Brunswick, Metuchen, 
Maidenhead, and Deerfield Churches. In April, 1764, he 
was appointed to supply at Deerfield until the next 
meeting of the Presbytery of New Brunswick. The short 
space of time in which he passed his examinations and 
won approval on his trials as a pastor served as sufficient 
proof of his capacity and diligence. 




^^HEN THE PRESBYTERY of New Brunswick met in 
Philadelphia on May 16, 1765, the church officials were 
faced with a request from Buffalo and Alamance set- 
tlements in Piedmont North Carolina for David Caldwell 
to settle there in his work of the ministry. In response to 
this call, the Synod of New York and Philadelphia ap- 
pointed Caldwell "to labor at least one whole year as a 
missionary in North Carolina," ordered that he be or- 
dained in 1765 before undertaking this assignment, and 
arranged for him to be transferred from the Presbytery of 
New Brunswick to the Presbytery of Hanover in Virginia. 
This meant that he, had successfully passed all of his 
requirements — that, after having spent altogether four- 
teen years of his adult life in serious study in order to 
become the finished scholar he longed to be, he was now 
recommended as one fully prepared to accept the in- 
vitation which had especially asked for him. He was then 
forty years old and was just at the beginning of his real 
life's work. 



CALDWELL REPORTED promptly to the call from Buffalo 
and Alamance Churches. His biographer, the Rev. Eli W. 
Caruthers, in his Sketch of the Life and Character of the 
Rev. David Caldwell, D.D., invited his readers to think 
about the man as he appeared: "There was something 
about him which was unique, and which language cannot 
define." His facial expression and manner were such that 
with very few words he was able to make his listener un- 
derstand how he felt on whatever question was placed 
before him. His response was given with such calmness 
and good humor that no feelings of disapproval were ex- 
cited, even if his point of view was different on the subject 
under discussion. 

At this time in his life his stature was above the 
medium size, being a little over six feet; his figure was 
erect, firm, muscular, and vigorous. He had a well- 
formed head and strong features. His constitution was 
not only sound and his health in good order, but his 
habits of business and of study kept all his powers of body 
and mind in constant and healthful exercise. Moreover, 
"there was not only habitual cheerfulness in his 
disposition... but he had an exhaustless fund of humor." 
People who knew him intimately remarked on his ready 
wit, but gave few examples of it. 

His close associates reported that he had a capacity 
for almost everything and could learn with the greatest of 
ease everything he attempted ; and what he once learned 
he never forgot. His longing for knowledge was endless 
and to acquire it he spared neither toil nor expense. To 
this description John Motley Morehead, his private 



student for four years, added: "He was an exceedingly 
studious man, as his great acquisitions in various depart- 
ments of learning proved. The prominent characteristics 
of his mind were the power to acquire knowledge and to 
retain it, and the power to apply it to useful and practical 

Another remarkable trait of this man was the fact 
that he never appeared impatient but gave the best he 
had to offer to every opportunity which opened to him. In 
this spirit he came to North Carolina. 

THE PEOPLE WITH whom he was to work in his new 
assignment were not strangers to him. They were Scotch- 
Irish Presbyterians, who, as members of the Nottingham 
Company, had acquired a tract of more than 21,000 
acres of land in North Carolina and had moved there in 
the 1750's. Before they left Pennsylvania they had asked 
Caldwell to join them in their new location and become 
their pastor as soon as he had completed his college 

These early settlers had also been giving dedicated 
thought to religion, and in their new settlement they had 
established Buffalo and Alamance churches. Buffalo 
Church had its beginning in August, 1755, when the Rev. 
Hugh McAden came as a missionary from Pennsylvania 
and held a meeting at the home of Adam Mitchell, near 
where the church now stands. The date of official 
organization is given as 1756. Alamance Church tells the 
story of its beginning on an attractive marker in its front 


churchyard: "In 1762, kneeling under an oak tree and 
led in prayer by Andrew Finley, our fathers dedicated 
these grounds to Almighty God as a place of public wor- 
ship forever." The date of official organization is given as 
1764. The church buildings of both Buffalo and Ala- 
mance were simple log structures, long since dedicated to 
time and usage. The records show that these staunch 
Presbyterian groups soon "developed a democratic, in- 
dividualistic, self-reliant society very different from that 
of the older settled coastal region." They have been 
characterized as having three distinct loves: religion, 
democracy, and education. 

Upon arrival in his new field of service, Caldwell 
found that the spirit of individualism was asserting itself. 
The Buffalo congregation belonged to the Old Side, that 
is, the nonevangelical, but the more recently established 
Alamance church adhered to the New Light, or New Side 
following, which believed in revivals as a soul-saving 
technique. This distinction, not existing today, was a 
point to be reckoned with in Caldwell's time. For exam- 
ple, the two sides even sang different hymns. But Cald- 
well was indeed a wise man, untroubled by schism. When 
he preached at Alamance, he sang the melodious strains 
of Watts; but when at Buffalo he was constrained to 
chant the Psalms of David. Recognizing the advantages 
and disadvantages of both points of view, he felt he would 
be able to meet the requirements of both the Old Side 
and the New Side. 

It appears, however, that the two congregations may 
have tested him before they definitely made him their 


future pastor, for it was thought that he visited their com- 
munities in 1764 and 1765. According to a History of 
Rowan County by the Rev. Jethro Rumple, it is recorded 
that Caldwell had taught school for a while at Crowfield 
Academy, near the present Davidson College location, 
before he settled in what is now Guilford County and that 
he visited and advised with a number of churches in the 
area. Caldwell's reliable biographer, Caruthers, wrote 
that he was not sure about all of his subject's first years in 
North Carolina, but he made clear that Caldwell was not 
installed as pastor of Buffalo and Alamance Churches as 
soon as he reached the state. 

IN 1766, ABOUT A YEAR after he had arrived as a 
missionary to North Carolina, David Caldwell married 
Rachel Craighead. He had passed his forty-first birth- 
day and she her twenty-fourth. She was the daughter of 
Alexander and Jane Craighead who were the parents of 
eight children — Margaret, Agnes, Jane, Rachel, Mary, 
Elizabeth, Robert, and Thomas — and every one of these 
developed into worthy citizens. The daughters, as was the 
usual custom, married and became good housewives. 
Robert served as a Captain in the Revolutionary War 
then moved to Tennessee, as did many North 
Carolinians. Thomas studied at Caldwell's Log College, 
became a minister, and also went to Tennessee. There he 
was chosen the first pastor of the First Presbyterian 
Church in Nashville; and he founded the Davidson 
Academy, which later developed into the University of 



Rachel Craighead was an exceptionally suitable 
companion for David Caldwell, for she was descended 
from a line of prominent Scotch- Irish Presbyterian 
ministers. Her great-grandfather was the Rev. Robert 
Craighead, Sr., her grandfather was the Rev. Thomas 
Craighead, Sr., and her father was the Rev. Alexander 
Craighead. The two older gentlemen were educated in 
Scotch Universities and Alexander benefited from their 
learning. He gave particular attention to the education of 
his womenfolk by providing good books for study and 
reading enjoyment. A dynamic preacher, a follower of 
the Rev. George Whitefield, for many years he was 
severely criticised by reactionary churchmen for his in- 
dependent ideas about religion, but during the last years 
of his life he was happily situated as pastor of Sugar Creek 
Presbyterian Church in Mecklenburg County, North 
Carolina. Neill R. McGeachy, in his History of the Sugar 
Creek Presbyterian Church, wrote: "Sugar Creek 
Congregation loved [Alexander] Craighead... Time and 
talent both fail as we try to assess the worth and con- 
tribution of this man whose life and work set the mold for 
Sugar Creek Church and whose family and descendants 
have extended his influence through a large part of the 
Southland and its institutions." He has been cited by a 
number of writers as one of the foremost leaders for 
American Independence in North Carolina. It appears 
that David Caldwell had married into exactly the right 
family for him. The bride and groom had known each 
other when they were young people in Pennsylvania, but 
they had not been together for fifteen years. The couple 


This map, dated 1755, shows the development of the land when David Caldwell 
arrived in this area. 


soon established permanent residence in the general 
locality of the Nottingham Company's settlement, about 
three and a half miles from the center of present-day 

ALTHOUGH CALDWELL had not yet been installed as 
minister of the two churches he planned to serve, his 
mind was not idle. "Let the people be taught!" John Knox 
had exclaimed, and among the branches of Protestantism 
following Knox, Martin Luther, John Calvin, and George 
Fox, the study of the Bible by laymen became the foun- 
dation of the Protestant religion. Its leaders in turn soon 
became convinced that if religion were to stand and 
grow, its members would have to be educated, since the 
congregations took part in policy making, and assemblies 
of laymen took over church legislation. "Education for 
all" was also a popular theme in Caldwell's time, and he 
made that subject a firm step in his new location. He was 
quick to see, however, that if he would maintain a family 
in comfort, he would have to do so through his own 
ingenuity; so as a basis of support for religion and learn- 
ing, in 1765 he purchased a 550-acre farm on which he 
expected to establish his home. 

Of great importance, he soon realized that if he 
would be of lasting benefit to the region in which he had 
chosen to live, he would have to help raise a higher level 
of general intelligence in society, for there were no 
schools of advanced instruction in the area. He knew that 
it was a time of organization in the New World and a 



good government could "never be established unless the 
people understood their rights and have intelligence and 
moral principles sufficient to govern themselves." With 
foresight he looked to a future when the mass of people 
would be so enlightened as to elect an intelligent gov- 
erning body of the province. These leaders should be men 
who understood that if this country were to grow in the 
direction of a democracy it should at all times have the 
support of an enlightened citizenry. "Let the people be 
taught" was the key to this country's success, as he en- 
visioned it. With such thoughts in mind in the year 1767 
Caldwell commenced a classical school at his own two- 
story log house, but the institution was so well received 
that he soon built a separate schoolhouse in which he con- 
tinued teaching "with two or three short interruptions, 
until he was disqualified by the infirmities of age." As 
both promoter and teacher, Caldwell offered courses in 
the classics, sciences, and theology, and his academy soon 
became known as David Caldwell's Log College, an ad- 
vanced institution which prepared young men to enter 
the junior year at senior colleges or universities. From 
firsthand observation Eli Caruthers, Caldwell's biograph- 
er and personal friend, described the establishment : 

Being a thorough scholar himself in all that he professed to 
teach, and having a peculiar tact for the management of boys, as 
well as a facility in communicating instruction, he soon became so 
celebrated as a teacher that he had students from all the States south 
of the Potomac ; and according to the testimony of those who were 
better judges of the matter than the writer, he was certainly in- 
strumental in bringing more men into the learned professions than 
any other man of his day, at least in the southern States. Many of 
these became eminent, as statesmen, lawyers, judges, physicians, and 



ministers of the gospel ; and while some of them only prepared for 
college with him... the larger portion, and several of those who 
became the most distinguished in after life, never went any where 
else for instruction, and never enjoyed any higher advantages. Five of 
his scholars became Governors of different States; many more mem- 
bers of Congress, some of whom occupied a high standing... But the 
most important service which he rendered, as a teacher, was to the 
church, or to the cause of religion; for nearly all the young men who 
came into the ministry of the Presbyterian church, for many years, 
not only in North Carolina, but in the States south and west of it, 
were trained in his school. . . 

In a communication [I] recently received from the Rev. E.B. 
Currie, who is one of his oldest pupils yet living, he says, !-?Dr. Cald- 
well, as a teacher, was probably more useful to the church than any 
one man in the United States. I could name about forty ministers 
who received their education in whole or in part from him ; and how 
many more I cannot tell ; but his log cabin served for many years in 
North Carolina as an Academy, a College, and a Theological 
Seminary. His manner of governing his school, family, and churches 
was very much the same, that is, on the mild and paternal 
plan, generally attended with some wit and pleasant humor; yet few 
men have ever succeeded better in keeping good order." 

The number of students in his institution was large 
for the time and circumstances of the country. The 
average attendance was usually fifty, seldom less, and 
sometimes it was sixty or more. The tuition was $10 or 
$12 per year, and he made no charge when students were 
financially handicapped or were preparing for the 
ministry. For about fifty years the institution had an in- 
comparable record of success in the South. Caruthers 
concluded that "Probably no man in the Southern States 
has had a more enviable reputation as a teacher, or was 
more beloved by his pupils; and no man, with the same 
number of scholars, ever had so few occurrences of an un- 
pleasant kind while they were under his care, or saw less 



to regret in their subsequent conduct." As was then the 
custom, he kept a switch nearby, but used it only two or 
three times during his almost half century of teaching, 
which was a truly remarkable record. 

Even though Caldwell's Log College was founded 
several years before Guilford County was established and 
many years before Greensboro was a county seat, it 
became the literary torch which lighted the avenues 
leading to the city's present educational structure. 

ONE YEAR AFTER Caldwell had opened his Log College, 
he was officially installed as the pastor of Buffalo and 
Alamance churches on March 3, 1768. According to 
Caruthers, "The Rev. Hugh McAden preached the in- 
stallation sermon, presided, and appears to have per- 
formed all the services prescribed by our standards in 
such cases." Caldwell accepted the two pastorates at $200 
per year between them, to be paid in grain at the 
prevailing price, if the church members chose that kind 
of remuneration. It is revealing to know that there is no 
record that his salary was ever raised during the almost 
sixty years that he served as minister, teacher, counselor, 
statesman, and religious leader in his community, in the 
state, and in the nation — loving and being loved by the 




There WERE SOUND reasons for the high esteem in 
which David Caldwell was held by people near and far. 
As soon as he moved into the area of Buffalo and 
Alamance Churches, he began pleasing services which 
touched every action of life known to him. There were a 
number of men in his generation who were excellent 
ministers of the gospel, but few if any of them became ac- 
tive in as many different subjects as he ably assisted in or 
directed. From the beginning to the end of his ministry, 
he was recognized for his interests and labors which in- 
fluenced mankind. 

As SOON AS his Log College and two churches were 
prospering, it was natural for him to begin the expansion 
of religious activity beyond his own community. There- 
fore, two years after he was installed as pastor of Buffalo 
and Alamance churches he became active on a commit- 
tee which was appointed at Buffalo Church to organize 
the Presbytery of Orange in 1770. At that time the Pres- 
bytery of Hanover, to which Caldwell belonged, appear- 
ed to extend over the whole country south of the Potomac 



River. Caruthers did not record that Caldwell was the 
first to request the new Presbytery, but his name was list- 
ed as one of eight men who "constituted a Presbytery by 
the name of Orange". However, his biographer did re- 
cord that Caldwell "acted as stated clerk until 1776." In 
this connection Caruthers also added that "From all this 
it appears that David Caldwell was among the first settled 
ministers of the Presbyterian Church in North Carolina; 
and his name is identified with the history of our church 
in this State, more perhaps than the name of any other 
man in it, ...and considering all the ways in which his 
influence was exerted he did more for the cause of hu- 
manity, and for the advancement of sound learning and 
Bible religion" than anyone in his area. 

IN THE MEANTIME the teacher-preacher had been faced 
with a big regional problem of everyday living. Before he 
and his bride Rachel had been able to get their new house 
and farm in good order after they moved into a location 
which became present-day Greensboro, their neighbors 
began to discuss with them a situation that was troubling 
the citizens of Piedmont North Carolina. 

These people who had crossed the Atlantic Ocean in 
the quest for liberty and religious freedom had unex- 
pectedly found themselves in the grasp of public scoun- 
drels. This situation had come to pass in a disturbing 
way. At that time their mother country England ap- 
pointed a Royal Governor of the colony or province, but 
the people elected the General Assembly which passed 
general laws for all citizens of this specific colony. The 



Governor then appointed local officials for enforcing the 
laws. Most of the people, however, had been living rather 
freely and had given little thought to the laws until they 
noticed that their fees and taxes were outgrowing their 
purses. Upon investigation they learned that the officers 
by royal appointment — clerks of the courts, recorders of 
deeds, surveyors, lawyers and all the smaller of- 
ficers—were collecting two or three times the legal fees 
and were putting the extra money in their own pockets. 

In addition to these surprising and shocking in- 
creases, the current Royal Governor William Tryon had 
promoted a poll tax to construct an elegant governmental 
palace at New Bern — said to have been the most hand- 
some statehouse in English America — and the people 
of the western counties resented that move. Such a tax 
forced the poorest man to pay as much as the richest, 
which seemed all out of proportion to the recent settlers 
of the Piedmont. It had been difficult to collect enough 
cash to pay their already fixed taxes, which had also 
doubled, and when the extra poll tax was added they said 
they would pay their just assessments but no more. * 

Such talk continued for several years while matters 
grew worse. These unjust collections were of great con- 
cern to David Caldwell, for his congregations of Buffalo 
and Alamance Churches were among those who had been 
required to pay the illegal sums. In fact, about two weeks 
after he had been installed as their pastor, Herman 

*At that time "hard money" was extremely scarce in North Carolina. In fact, 
because the Crown always insisted on collecting its money in silver and gold, even the 
Royal Governors found it almost impossible to collect their own salaries in hard 
money. Barter of goods was the general method of exchange, as exemplified in David 
Caldwell's pastoral salary having been paid in grain. 



Husband (a Quaker) , Rednap Howell (religion un- 
known) and James Hunter (of Caldwell's congregation) 
organized themselves into a group known as the Regula- 
tors, because they proposed to regulate the unlawful 
practices. By this time Caldwell had become known as 
a man of sound judgment, and, because of his interest 
in community affairs, he became an unofficial counselor 
in the Regulation Movement. 

In an effort to obtain justice by peaceful means, the 
Regulators prepared a document, signed by about 500 
citizens, and James Hunter and Rednap Howell in person 
carried the petition to Governor Tryon. After consulting 
with his council, the Governor ordered the Regulators to 
cease all their actions. However, recognizing that the 
Regulators had reason for complaint, the Governor in 
turn promised to warn all officers and lawyers against 
collecting more than was due and to publish a list of fees 
for everyone to follow. Caruthers wrote that some officials 
had agreed to pay back such extra sums as they had 
collected, but no record was made of such a settlement. 

The Regulators then appealed to the General 
Assembly, but, since that body was called and dismissed 
at the Governor's pleasure, it was discharged within four 
days after its called meeting because of other issues, and 
was unable to offer advice on the Regulation Movement. 
It appeared that the Regulators had no other recourse for 
redress of their grievances, and they took matters in their 
own hands and broke up the courts through which they 
could secure no justice and thrashed some of the 
dishonest officials. 



Soon after that time the Regulators learned that 
Governor Tryon was planning to settle the trouble by 
force and would meet the Regulators with his army. 
Members of the movement had no artillery; they were 
poorly trained for battle, and some of them did not even 
have guns; yet they assembled to defend themselves 
against the Governor and his militiamen. The two armies 
camped near Great Alamance Creek on May 15, 1771. 

Before the Regulators left home they asked David 
Caldwell to go with them and use his influence for peace 
without bloodshed, and he also spent the night at camp. 
The next morning the minister passed back and forth 
between the two armies in an effort to prevent a battle, 
had a personal conference with the Governor on that sub- 
ject, "and obtained from Tryon a promise that he would 
not... fire on the Regulators until he had made a fair trial 
of what could be done by negotiation." But after that 
promise matters got out of hand on both sides. Caldwell 
was warned to retire from between the lines or he might 
be shot. 

The Governor sent word to his soldiers that he would 
give a signal for action and cautioned the Regulators to 
take care of themselves by laying down their guns at once. 
He further cautioned that if they did not directly put 
their arms aside they would be fired on immediately. 
"Fire and be d — d!" was the Regulators' answer. The 
Governor gave the order to fire, but he was not im- 
mediately obeyed. Rising up on his horse and turning to 
his men, he called: "Fire! Fire on them or me!" With that 
firm direction, action almost instantly became general. 



The Battle of Alamance was fought on May 16, 1771. 
Tryon's 1,452 militiamen met about 2,000 untrained 
Regulators (figures differ in different accounts) , and 
after about two hours of fighting the Regulators were 
defeated. Tryon reported that "A signal and glorious vic- 
tory was obtained over the obstinate and infatuated 

There were nine men killed on each side, an 
unknown number wounded, and twelve Regulators cap- 
tured for treason. The prisoners were promised a trial in 
about a month, and when the time was set, David Cald- 
well traveled 46 miles for the purpose of using what in- 
fluence he could to obtain their pardon "by testifying to 
the character of such of them he knew, and by appearing 
there as a minister of mercy to intercede on their behalf." 
Despite Caldwell's pleas, all the prisoners were convicted, 
and six were hanged almost immediately. None of them 
were members of his congregation, but out of his deep in- 
terest in mankind, Caldwell remained with them through 
the day of execution. The other six were later pardoned 
by the King. Most of the remaining Regulators were par- 
doned by the Governor, provided they would disband and 
pledge on their honor to remain loyal to the government. 
Within six months 6,409 citizens agreed to these terms. 

Despite Caldwell's serious efforts to help the 
Regulators, James Hunter withdrew from the minister's 
congregation because he, Hunter, felt that the pastor 
"was not sufficiently zealous in the cause." He was the 
only one, however, who felt that way; all the rest thought 
that Caldwell had acted very wisely. All things con- 



sidered, this appears to have been the first time Caldwell 
had ever suffered defeat. 

Caruthers must have felt that the Regulator 
Movement was a very important period in Caldwell's life, 
for he used one-fourth of the pages in his biography to 
report the subject in detail. Although the Movement has 
not been considered by historians as a part of the 
American Revolution, Caruthers felt that the unrest of 
the people during this time made them watch the actions 
of the British more carefully as they began to make more 
demands of the American colonies. 

On several current topics, the Regulators had given 
spirit to the Americans. They understood their rights too 
well, and valued their liberties too highly, to be patient 
under oppression. The spirit of resistance, instead of 
being crushed, soon began to acquire greater vigor in all 
departments of society. Noticing a number of restrictions 
which England had recently put upon the Americans — 
such as keeping English soldiers in the New World in a 
time of peace, closing Boston harbor after the famous 
tea party in 1773, and thinking of different ways to tax 
the colonies — created an unhappy reaction. 

Some North Carolina citizens, however, who had 
pledged loyalty to the King after the Battle of Alamance, 
were disturbed about breaking that promise. At that 
point, basing his comments on the philosophy of Jean 
Jacques Rousseau (Contract Social) , the patriotism and 
cool calculation of Dr. Caldwell manifested itself. He un- 
derstood his fellowmen, for he had faced the question 
that was bothering them, and he explained to his people 



that allegiance and protection were inseparable; and 
since the King had not protected them from the unlawful 
collections of fees and taxes which had driven them to 
rebellion through the Regulation Movement, and since 
he was still not able to assert his authority over the coun- 
try, their oath of allegiance, which had been exacted by 
force, was no longer binding. 

WHILE THE SPIRIT of American Independence was 
growing both locally and nationally, David Caldwell was 
following that line of thought as he trained his students in 
the Log College and ministered to his church congrega- 
tions. Being thus daily associated with people of varied 
interests, he became conscious of a distressing physical 
condition in his surrounding environment; and it made 
him consider it his duty to give some thought to a subject 
other than religion, education, and government. Thus 
faced with the naked truth, he realized that there was no 
physician within any reasonable distance of his neighbor- 
hood, and the people among whom he lived and to whom 
he was devoted were in great need of medical assistance. 
He felt deeply that he should acquire such knowledge 
as would enable him to be of service to physical suffering 
among his own people. For that purpose he secured a 
few medical books from Philadelphia, with the intention 
of making the best use of them he could. He applied every 
leisure moment to this study, even reading far into the 
night that he might become more proficient in the field 
of medicine. 

When he was engaged in this learning process a 



young Dr. Woodsides, a distant relative of Mrs. Caldwell, 
arrived in the area unexpectedly. Caldwell welcomed him 
wholeheartedly and invited him to become a part of his 
family and practice medicine in the surrounding country- 
side. Caldwell enjoyed going with the physician on visits 
to the afflicted and getting all the medical instruction 
and assistance the young man could give him. This pleas- 
ant relationship, however, was of short duration, for 
Dr. Woodsides died about a year after his arrival. 

The books of this promising physician, whose death 
was so premature and so much regretted, were offered for 
sale, and Caldwell bought and assiduously studied them. 
He also remembered his college friend, Dr. Benjamin 
Rush of Philadelphia, who had graduated from college 
one year ahead of him, had become a famous physician 
and author, and had signed the Declaration of In- 
dependence. Caldwell bought and read his books as soon 
as they were published. He even made several journeys to 
Philadelphia to consult Dr. Rush about serious afflictions 
he had encountered; and the two gentlemen kept up a 
steady correspondence as long as they lived. With these 
medical advantages Caldwell soon became highly respect- 
ed for his knowledge and skill in the medical profession 
and thereafter was generally known as "Dr. Caldwell." 
For many years he was the only practicing physician of 
recognized ability within a radius of twenty miles around 

The excellence of Dr. Caldwell's self-taught course 
in medicine was further revealed through the capability 
of his fourth son, David. When the young man expressed 



a desire to become a physician, he received his education 
at home under the tutelage of his father. So thorough was 
the instruction that, although he never attended a course 
of medical lectures, David Caldwell, Jr., received, 
without application for it, a diploma from the Medical 
Department of the University of Pennsylvania. The father 
then turned over his medical practice to his son; except 
in the cases of very serious illnesses, however, the elder 
Dr. Caldwell remained subject to call. Through this 
trustworthy partnership of the two Caldwells, the citizens 
of Guilford County and bordering settlements had much 
of the needed physical care and attention. 

ALONG WITH HIS other accomplishments, the elder Dr. 
Caldwell had developed into a successful farmer. During 
his years in North Carolina he first acquired 550 acres of 
land and continued to add to that acreage. As time 
passed, he and his wife Rachel had become the parents of 
eight sons and one daughter who grew to maturity— 
Samuel, Alexander, Andrew, Martha called Patsy, 
twins David, Jr., and Thomas, John, Edmund, and Ro- 
bert—and four other children who died in infancy. He 
knew that his pastoral salary of $200 per year could not 
possibly keep his family in comfort. Of course his Log 
College brought some income, but there is no record of 
financial reward for his services as a physician. He had a 
grist mill which might have brought some tolls of grain, 
but Governor Morehead wrote that it "was built rather to 
serve as a hobby for amusement than for any more prac- 



tical purpose." It therefore appears that his own crops 
were the main source of provisions for his household 

This situation seemed to pose no problem at all for 
this man of so many talents. There was at that time the 
debatable thought that men should be employed to the 
full extent of all their powers and when thus engaged they 
became healthier and happier. Caldwell became a living 
example of this theory. His biographer wrote that "His 
constitution was uncommonly vigorous. . .he hardly ever 
knew what it was to be sick, except for one attack of 
fever... he was in the regular habit of going to bed at ten 
and rising at four. . .he ditched and irrigated his meadows 
with his own hands; and he did it by working with a 
spade something like an hour at a time, morning and 
evening... and the consequence was, not only that his 
health and vigor were preserved, but that he had the best 
meadows in the country." 

When the meadows did not require his attention, he 
found something else of a profitable kind to afford em- 
ployment for free hours, which most others devoted ex- 
clusively to so-called relaxation. Indeed, every hour, and 
almost every minute that could be used wisely on his 
farm, he happily devoted to outside activities. Joseph M. 
Morehead of Greensboro, a contemporary and friend of 
David F. Caldwell who was a grandson of David, Sr., 
knew firsthand the farming habits of the elderly gentle- 
man. Morehead later wrote that he set patterns for 
"advanced intelligent agriculture. His farm was the 
neatest, his meadows the most luxuriant, and his sub- 



drains the straightest, the staunchest and the best. Like 
other rock memorials of other noble old Romans, his 
blind ditches are with us and doing service today." Thus 
the Rev. David Caldwell was able to accomplish what 
would appear to many as impossible. According to other 
records of the community, he became one of the 
wealthiest men in his vicinity. As he had acquired ad- 
ditional land, he acquired the aid of nineteen servants 
who aided in the care of his school, his home, and the 
cultivation of the soil. It appears, therefore, that this gen- 
tleman farmer during his lifetime built up for himself a 
very successful near-plantation type of business. 

DR. CALDWELL'S FAILURE to prevent actual fighting be- 
tween the Regulators and Tryon's army did not stop his 
attempts to promote justice, and as the difficulties be- 
tween England and the New World grew more and more 
serious, he raised from his pulpit a more and more power- 
ful voice for united efforts to preserve American liberty. 
It seems appropriate to pause and review his pleadings for 
the benefit of those who would come after him : 

We petitioned his Majesty, in a most humble manner, to in- 
tercede with the Parliament on our behalf. Our petitions were rejec- 
ted, while our grievances were increased by acts still more oppres- 
sive, and by schemes still more malicious, till we are reduced to 
the dreadful alternative either of immediate and unconditional sub- 
mission or of resistance by force of arms. We have therefore come to 
that trying period in our history in which it is manifest that the 
Americans must either stoop under a load of the vilest slavery, or 
resist their imperious and haughty oppressors; but what will follow 
must be of the utmost importance to every individual of these United 
Colonies... if we act like the sluggard, refuse, from the mere love of 



ease and self-indulgence, to make the sacrifices and efforts which the 
circumstances require, or from cowardice or pusillanimity, shrink 
from dangers and hardships, we must continue in our present state of 
bondage and oppression... until life itself will become a burden; but 
if we stand up manfully and unitedly in defence of our rights, ap- 
palled by no dangers and shrinking from no toils or privations, we 
shall do valiantly. Our foes are powerful and determined on con- 
quest; but our cause is good; and, in the strength of the Lord, who 
is mightier than all, we shall prevail... If I could portray to you... the 
results of your conduct in this great crisis in your political destiny; 
or if I could describe... the feelings which you will have of self ap- 
probation, joy, and thankfulness, or, of self reproach, shame and 
regret, according to the part you act — whether as men and as 
patriots, or as cowards and traitors — I should have no difficulty in 
persuading you to shake off your sloth, and stand up manfully in a 
firm, united, and persevering defence of your liberties. . .we expect 
that none of you will be wanting in the discharge of your duty, or 
prove unworthy of a cause which is so important in itself, and which 
every patriot and every christian should value more than wealth, and 
hold as dear as his life. 

THE 1770s THROUGH THE 1780S might be called the 
organizational years of Dr. Caldwell's adult life. During 
this period his influence was felt deeply in his region. 
Remembering his attention to education, religion, sec- 
tional government, and medicine, his biographer re- 
minded his readers that before the 1780s ended Dr. Cald- 
well also served as a noteworthy statesman of North 

The battles of Lexington, Concord, and Bunker Hill 
in New England in the spring of 1775 and the Battle of 
Moore's Creek Bridge in the South in February, 1776, 
plus the attitude of King George III on a number of 
recent taxes imposed on the colonies — as they said, 
"Taxation without Representation" — moved the Amer- 



icans to seek freedom from British rule. In his History 
of the United States of America, Henry W. Elson wrote: 
"North Carolina won the honor of being first to make 
an official move." At a meeting of the North Carolina 
Provincial Congress at Halifax "on the 12th of April 
[1776] that colony instructed its delegates in [the Con- 
tinental] Congress 'to concur with the delegates of the 
other colonies in declaring independence and forming 
foreign alliances.' This was a move of greatest impor- 
tance, and it was but a short time until Rhode Island and 
then Massachusetts followed the example of their south- 
ern sister." 

These actions were made official through the 
Declaration of Independence, which was adopted by the 
Continental Congress on July 4, 1776. David Caldwell's 
influence must have been deeply felt on this courageous 
stand because he had constantly preached freedom from 
English rule from the pulpits of Alamance and Buffalo 
Churches, and he had taught freedom from English rule 
in his Log College to his students from all the states south 
of the Potomac River. 

After American Independence had been declared, 
each state was authorized to write its own constitution, 
and North Carolina by public elections named delegates 
to serve in the Fifth Provincial Congress to meet at 
Halifax for writing the Constitution of the Independent 
State of North Carolina. David Caldwell was one of the 
five delegates elected from Guilford County to aid in this 
work. When the Constitution and the Bill of Rights Com- 
mittee reported the document to the convention assem- 


Courtesy of Albert Barden of Raleigh 

In this house at Halifax, the Fifth Provincial Congress met in November and 
December, 1776, and wrote the first Constitution of the Independent State of North 

bled, like those of other states, it included some restrictive 
measures which appear surprising at the present time. 
For example: Section 32, traditionally attributed to Dr. 
Caldwell, did no more than express the prevailing sen- 
timent of the day in which it was written ; but it became a 
cause for a religious and political controversy in the state 
by the 1830s. The article reads as follows: 

That no person who shall deny the being of God, or the Truth of 
the Protestant Religion, or the Divine Authority of the Old or New 
Testament, or who shall hold Religious Principles incompatible with 
the Freedom and Safety of the State, shall be capable of holding any 
office or Place of Trust or Profit in the Civil Department, within this 



By amendment in 1835 the word "Christian" replaced the 
word "Protestant," and by 1868 the only religious 
requirement for holding office was believing in Almighty 
God. According to Caruthers no record supports the 
claim that Caldwell wrote that section, but if he did write 
it, no apology would be necessary, for the Protestant 
religion "was generally regarded then as the safeguard of 
our liberties." 

DR. CALDWELL RETURNED from the North Carolina 
Constitutional Convention of 1776 at the beginning of the 
tenth year of his Log College. The American Revolu- 
tionary War had been in action for nineteen months. 
Ministers were usually less active than Caldwell in serving 
beyond the call of duty, but it was understood that the 
measures of government which developed from injustices 
and tended to oppress human liberty were subjects which 
should be denounced from the pulpit as freely as any- 
thing else. Although Caldwell was a great lover of peace 
and would have made any reasonable sacrifice to main- 
tain it, yet when fundamental principles or important 
interests were at stake, and he saw any prospect of suc- 
cess, he was decided, firm, and persevering. Therefore, 
hardly a Sabbath passed in which he did not summarize 
the prevailing situation of the country in some way. 
Meanwhile he denounced in the strongest terms the cor- 
ruptions and oppressions imposed upon the United States 
by the British Government, and he urged his congrega- 
tions with tireless energy and zeal to value their liberties 
above anything else. As Caruthers wrote : 



Whatever may be said or thought, in ordinary times, about the 
propriety of introducing politics into the pulpit, no man of 
enlightened views and patriotic feelings could object to it in such cir- 
cumstances, when liberty and every thing valuable was at stake. The 
influence of the pulpit is confessedly great every where and at all 
times; nor should it ever be desecrated, or perverted from its 
legitimate and proper use ; but if those who occupy it are never to lift 
up their voice against corruption in high places, or against the 
iniquity and oppression of rulers, they must be unfaithful to their 
high trust ; for they must then neglect a part of the counsel of God 
and swerve from the example of the apostles and prophets, who were 
required to denounce, with fidelity and fearlessness, the bribery and 
corruption, the haughtiness and oppression of kings and rulers. With 
the common course of politics, or with political measures which re- 
late merely to the posterity and improvement of the country, minis- 
ters should have nothing to do in the pulpit; nor out of it, in any way 
that would lessen their ministerial influence; but measures of 
government that proceed from a want of moral principles, that are 
fraught with injustice and corruption, or that tend to oppression and 
threaten the subversion of human liberty, are as legitimate objects of 
denunciation and warning from the pulpit as anything else. If truth 
is to be maintained in its purity and the ordinances of the church 
kept from profanation, the liberties of the people must be preserved; 
for when men undertake to interfere with the freedom of conscience 
in others, he must exercise a power equally extensive in other things; 
and if corruption should ever become so extended in this country, 
and the iron sceptre of rising despotism be so firmly grasped by those 
in authority, as to overturn or menace the liberties of the people 
the eyes of every patriot in the land would be again most anxiously 
and imploringly turned, as they were in bygone days, to those who 
minister at the alter. 

THIS PATRIOTIC CITIZEN expected to win American In- 
dependence, and in 1777 he became a trustee and 
leading organizer in the establishment of Liberty Hall 
Academy in Charlotte for advancing education in the 
new country. Caldwell kept thinking how important it 
was to train the minds of the young people so that they 
would be able to direct stable government in the New 



World. The fourteen -member board of trustees held its 
first meeting on January 3, 1778, and outlined courses of 
study almost the same as those later proposed for the 
University of North Carolina, except that they were more 
limited. Prospects at first looked unusually bright, but for 
some unknown reason the first two presidents of the in- 
stitute remained for only one year each. When the third 
president moved to Charlotte and was ready to take 
charge of Liberty Hall Academy in February, 1780, the 
entire business connected with the school suffered a sud- 
den death because of financial difficulties brought on by 
the Revolutionary War. This was the second time that 
Caldwell had experienced defeat in his efforts to develop 
a better world. 

AFTER THE REVOLUTIONARY WAR had been waged from 
April, 1775, and the northern section of the United States 
remained unconquered, in 1778 the British transferred 
the seat of the war to the South. After they had captured 
Savannah, Georgia (December, 1778), then Charleston, 
South Carolina (May, 1780), fighting was continued over 
that state, and through a series of battles reached North 
Carolina in October, 1780. On October 4, 1780, Major 
General Nathanael Greene became commander of the 
southern army and on December 12, 1780, he arrived at 

During this time of change in the field of conflict Dr. 
Caldwell was confronted with a trying situation in his 
home neighborhood. There were two active political par- 
ties in the country — the Whigs, or Patriots, and the 



Tories, or Loyalists — and when the war scene became 
centered in the Carolinas, both parties were stirred to 
fighting strength. Caldwell had lived all his life in peace 
while at home, but being a strong, influential Whig, the 
Tories hoped to take him as their prisoner and turn him 
over to Major General Lord Cornwallis, Commander of 
the British armed forces. The British General, having 
learned about Dr. Caldwell's teaching and preaching and 
his importance to the South, had offered a reward of 
two hundred pounds (estimated at around $1,000) for 
the American's capture. The Tories had set their hearts 
on winning that coveted prize. 

Dr. Caldwell often remarked that he had no great 
fear of his life being taken by British soldiers, for he 
thought their aim was to get the big reward and then 
deliver him to higher authorities, but that he had a real 
fear of the Tories who were marauding the country in a 
most undisciplined manner. The members of his 
congregations were mostly Whigs, and he continued to 
preach at his churches until the British moved into the 
nearby territory. Attendance was small, however, and 
those who dared to go often went with great fear. 
Although they felt some security from the Tories when at 
a worship service, all men, young and old, carried guns, 
for fear of being attacked on the open road or of return- 
ing to their homes and finding them in the hands of their 
enemies. Of course there were respectable men among 
the Tories, but in the heat of war their influence was 
pushed into the background, while the uncontrolled 
members rushed to the forefront. 



When the community was in this state of constant 
tension, Dr. Caldwell spent much of his time concealed in 
the nearby woods. One day while he was at home for a 
brief visit, his house was suddenly surrounded by a body 
of Tories. He was immediately taken prisoner and placed 
under the guard of some of the men. Although they ex- 
pected to turn him over to the British and collect the two- 
hundred-pound reward, their main object at the moment 
was to take whatever they desired in the way of clothing 
and household furnishings. 

Later some of the Caldwell children told about 
"seeing their father standing there beside the plun- 
der,... piled up in the middle of the floor... while the men 
were around him with their guns." A Mrs. Dunlap, Mrs. 
Caldwell's sister, who happened to be in the house, took 
matters in hand. She stepped into the room, went at once 
to Dr. Caldwell, and whispered into his ear as if he alone 
should hear, yet she purposely spoke loud enough for 
those around to understand. She asked him if it were not 
about time for Gillespie and his men to be there. The 
man who stood nearest caught the words, and with 
noticeable alarm he asked her what man was expected. 
"She told him it was none of his business; for she was just 
speaking to her brother." That answer only increased 
their uneasiness and in a moment they appeared panic- 
stricken, asking "who? who? what man?"... followed by 
"let us go, let us go, or the d — d rebels will be on us thick 
as hell before we know what we are about." And in their 
consternation they left both their prisoner and plunder to 
this ingenious woman. 



THE BRITISH WERE also known for their daring plun- 
dering in the Piedmont while they waited for the next 
battle. Somehow three of them learned that Dr. Caldwell 
had a very fine-blooded mare which was his favorite 
animal. One evening when he was returning home, one of 
this group rode up beside him and demanded the animal 
for use in the American army. Supposing that this man 
had been sent by General Greene to impress horses 
wherever he could find them, Dr. Caldwell calmly asked 
him for his authority. The man drew his sword, bran- 
dished it about, and rudely told him that this was his 

Dr. Caldwell would not have sold the animal at any 
price, but he turned the mare over to the man, who in 
turn as he rode away left the sorry, lean horse on which he 
had been riding. Early the next morning Dr. Caldwell 
located the three men and tried to arrange to get the 
mare back or get pay for it at some later date. In reply to 
this proposition the man took away from Caldwell the 
sorry horse he had exchanged for the mare the day before 
and gave the pleading American a horse with such a sore 
back that the saddle would not cover the infection. 

Dr. Caldwell then determined to get his mare back. 
He had a servant named Tom, who was especially good at 
playing the detective, and he offered the man a challeng- 
ing reward to steal the animal back and hide it in a place 
known only to himself. Tom was delighted to have such 
a special offer and his quick reply was, 'Til try, Sir." Dur- 
ing the remainder of the day the Negro located the mare 
and thought out his own plan of recapture. Remember - 



ing that he had the darkest of skins, he waited until the 
blackest hour of the night, stripped off all of his clothes 
so that he and the night appeared as one, and while 
everyone was sound asleep he eased up to the mare's head 
without making a sound. He led the animal into a wilder- 
ness hiding place which was known only to the captor. 

The following morning the three men who had 
stolen the mare went to Dr. Caldwell's home in a fit of 
violent anger and demanded that he turn the animal over 
to them. In truth Dr. Caldwell calmly told them that he 
had not seen the mare since they took it from him and 
that he did not know where to find the animal. Just as the 
angry men were about to attack Dr. Caldwell, several of 
his friends, who were waiting in an adjoining room to 
defend him, stepped out and one of them gave the thieves 
their departing orders. The three rude fellows, seeing 
that they were outnumbered, sulkily went away, and the 
prized mare was then returned to its rightful owner. 
However, sometime later the Tories stole the animal, 
which he was never able to recover. After the war was 
over he did get some compensation for this and other 
losses "by prosecuting the men who had done the 
mischief, but he did not get what he considered an 

AS WAR CONDITIONS were moving southwardly, a num- 
ber of Dr. Caldwell's friends from farther south came to 
his house for protection and stayed until they could 
return home safely. Two of Mrs. Caldwell's wealthy sisters 
from South Carolina came with their husbands and 



children, rented a house nearby, and stayed until the war 
was over. Meanwhile their husbands became soldiers and 
used their wagons and teams to aid in the American ser- 

Moreover, during this period of the Caldwells' full 
house, David also had the responsibility of protecting his 
brother Alexander's wife and seven children while 
Alexander was serving in the army. The farms of the two 
brothers were side by side and Alexander's family lived 
less than a mile away from David. One day just after sun- 
set, David saw two strange men going toward Alexander's 
place and thought that he should follow them. They were 
said to have been foraging for the British army as it 
passed by, and before David reached his brother's house 
the men had arrived, had ordered Mrs. Caldwell to 
prepare supper for them, and had taken whatever they 
wished to carry away. When David approached Alexan- 
der's house, however, a messenger from his sister-in-law 
met him and asked him to advise her what she should do. 
David suggested that she fix them the best meal she 
could, watch where they stacked their guns, and after she 
had seated them at a table as far as possible from the 
guns, then send him word behind a certain haystack 
where he would be hiding. She did exactly as she was ad- 
vised to do. Then David slipped in by a side door, took 
the loaded guns, told the men that they were his 
prisoners, and warned them that if they tried to escape, 
their lives would be their loss. They agreed to all his 
demands and after some time had passed he turned them 
over to an American officer. 



AWARE OF THE DANGER of being captured himself, Dr. 
Caldwell left his home and family and for more than two 
weeks hid himself about two miles away in the midst of 
the jungle which bordered North Buffalo Creek. Later 
his family told about this experience and Caruthers 
wrote: "Dr. Caldwell's enemies were anxious to take this 
man of power as their prisoner, and having at first failed, 
they resorted to deception and falsehood. At sunset one 
afternoon six British soldiers or Tories or both, rode up to 
his house and asked Mrs. Caldwell to tell them where he 
was. She told them that she thought he was at General 
Greene's camp. The men then said that he was not there, 
for they had just come from that camp where there were a 
great many sick men ; and General Greene having heard 
that Dr. Caldwell was a good physician, had sent them to 
accompany the doctor to his camp to treat those who 
were ill. Mrs. Caldwell, moved by their appeal, then 
added that if Dr. Caldwell was not at the American camp 
he was probably at a certain place which she described on 
North Buffalo Creek. That was the very information the 
men needed, and they thanked her profusely and hurried 
away. However, something in their manner of departure 
caused Mrs. Caldwell to believe that she had betrayed her 
husband, and she spent that night "not only in sleepless 
solitude but in fervent prayer." 

Realizing that the darkness of night was beginning to 
cover the land, the six men did not dare to enter the 
wilderness along Buffalo Creek until the next day, for the 
peavines were as high as a man on horseback. According 
to Caruthers, in the course of the night Dr. Caldwell 



dreamed three times in succession that danger threatened 
him and he must leave the place where he was hiding at 
once. He was so impressed by the vivid dreams that as 
soon as daylight came, he "set off for General Greene's 
camp which was then on or near Troublesome Creek, 
but, as it was ascertained afterwards, he had not left 
more than a few minutes when his pursuers arrived" at his 

ONE YOUNG MAN who belonged to Dr. Caldwell's 
congregation had earlier been captured by the British 
and was held as a prisoner. He managed to escape and 
returned home just before he learned that he had 
smallpox. His friends, not knowing that he had a con- 
tagious disease, flocked to see him, and soon the malady 
had spread all over the Buffalo Church neighborhood. 
All of the men who were eligible for war duty were either 
in the army or were employed in some way under the 
direction of General Nathanael Greene. This was a most 
distressing situation for Dr. Caldwell, for having been 
hunted in every direction by the British and Tories, at 
that time he was protected from his enemies in General 
Greene's camp. He knew that if he returned as a private 
citizen to treat smallpox patients, he would be captured 
and his people would only have an added distress. 

THEN, CAUSING a dreadful realization, in March, 1781, 
the two armies before battle came to Guilford County, 
North Carolina. Indeed, the British forces, under the 
command of General Cornwallis, came to David Cald- 


Courtesy of Greensboro Public Library 

It is said that while Lord Cornwallis paused beside this tree his horse was shot from 
under him during the Battle of Guilford Court House. 

Commander of the British armed forces at the 
Battle of Guilford Court House, March 15, 1781 


well's home and farm and there settled, in the main, near 
Guilford Court House, the Capital of his County! 

Dr. Caldwell remained in General Greene's camp 
until the soldiers left for the approaching Battle of 
Guilford Court House, which was fought near his home 
on March 15, 1781. He knew that he should stay away 
from his community, and he sought refuge with a friend 
named McBride, who lived within two miles of Greene's 
campsite. McBride, however, had lost his nerve and he 
told Caldwell right away that he was afraid to let him 
lodge in his house; and he confessed that he feared the 
Tories might find them and murder them together. Dr. 
Caldwell felt a little hurt at this attitude and said at once 
that he would hide himself in the nearby woods. McBride 
thought that was a fine idea and volunteered to go with 
him ; and they took their lodgings and pitched camp for 
that night on the banks of a nearby creek. 

During the day of the Battle of Guilford Court 
House, Dr. Caldwell walked uneasily for 12 or 14 miles in 
the direction of the fighting, met soldiers who had left the 
scene, and at first received only disturbing, fragmentary 
information. He went within a mile and a half of the bat- 
tlefield and remained until he knew the results, then 
returned to McBride's farm. 

On the following night McBride was awakened by 
the light of a huge fire which he thought was his burning 
house. He was too frightened to investigate himself, so he 
called to his camp mate: "Look yonder! The Tories are 
burning up everything I have!" It was a very dark, cloudy, 
rainy night and Dr. Caldwell trudged alone through the 



wilderness until he was close enough to see that McBride's 
house was safe and the blaze was coming from the camp- 
fire of Colonel William Washington and his segment of 
General Greene's army. Thus it was that patriotic David 
Caldwell spent the night after the Battle of Guilford 
Court House, which was the final turning point of the 
American Revolutionary War. 

Greene had made up his mind to take the risk of bat- 
tle for the cause of American freedom. After playing 
hide-and-seek with Cornwallis for several weeks, the 
American General took up his position at Guilford Court 
House, about six miles northwest of the center of the 
modern City of Greensboro, North Carolina. Here he 
waited for an attack. Cornwallis was intent upon victory 
while Greene hoped to damage the British army to the 
greatest extent possible with the least injury to his own 
men. After about two and a half hours of fierce and 
bloody fighting, Greene, satisfied with the damage he 

Courtesy of Harper 's New Monthly Magazine 1 857 


Courtesy of Harper 's New Monthly Magazine 1 857 

Notice the stocks and pillory and whipping post in the foreground which were used 
for punishing offenders. 

had inflicted upon the enemy and determined to preserve 
his army from further losses, retired from the field and 
moved into adjoining Rockingham County. Here he and 
his soldiers had a much-needed night's rest, for Greene 
later wrote his wife that he had not had his clothes off 
for six weeks. 

According to Charles L. Vial, ex-historian of the 
Guilford Court House National Military Park, the British 
entered about 2,000 trained soldiers in the battle and the 
Americans met them with an army of about 4,400 men. 
Among Greene's men there were some who had had very 
little military training, but many of them were seasoned 
warriors. The British losses were twenty-five per cent, 
killed, wounded, and missing. The American losses were 


Courtesy of the Greensboro Public Library 

This flag was used at the Battle of Guilford Court House. 

Photograph by Jack Moebes 

This drum was presented to the Guilford 
Courthouse Battleground Museum by local 
DAR aided by the SAR 

Outstanding in the Battle of Guilford Court House, 
Francisco has been cited as "a most famous soldier 
of the Revolutionary War." 

Courtesy of Greensboro Public Library 


six per cent, killed, wounded, and missing. The night 
following the battle was terribly depressing, because of its 
darkness and the torrents of rain which fell. The cries of 
the wounded and dying exceeded all description. Yet, in 
the face of this situation, Greene prepared to renew the 
battle. He reported on the next day "his men were in 
good spirits and in perfect readiness for another field." 
But Cornwallis had now had enough of Greene. "I never 
saw such fighting since God made me. The Americans 
fought like demons," Cornwallis was said to have con- 
fessed. The British general avoided battle, which before 
he had so anxiously sought. 

Because of Greene's withdrawal, Cornwallis claimed 
the victory, but it was a costly one. As Englishman 
Horace Walpole remarked: "Lord Cornwallis has 
conquered his troops out of shoes and provisions, and 
himself out of troops." The Battle of Guilford Court 
House had greatly reduced the British forces and had left 
no spirit in their commanding officer to renew the fight. 

Caruthers wrote that it was thought, though not 
positively recollected, that Dr. Caldwell under General 
Greene's flag of truce went to Guilford Court House the 
day after the battle. Here he met General Jackson, the 
principal physician of the British army, and together, 
using homes at New Garden as hospitals for the wounded 
British and Francis McNairy's house at Guilford Court 
House for the wounded Americans, "they cut off legs and 
arms and threw them into a cart at the door until it was 
pretty well loaded; and then they were taken away and 
buried." Thus working side by side these two physicians 
gave aid to both British and American soldiers by caring 


Photograph by Neill Jennings, Sr. 

This residence was used as a hospital for wounded American soldiers after the Battle of 
Guilford Court House. It is now restored and is located on the grounds of the Greens- 
boro Historical Museum. 

for the sick and wounded — by burying the dead, and by 
paying thoughtful honor to the men who had given their 
lives for the liberty of those who would come after them. 

While Dr. Caldwell had been away from his home, 
the British General had settled his army on the 
statesman's farm, and there they had destroyed 
everything which could not be devoured. With malicious 
cruelty they burned the Caldwell family Bible, private 
papers, sermons, and the library — an unusually fine 
collection for that time. That this was done with much 
cool deliberation is evident from the manner in which 
they proceeded. As described by Caruthers, "There was a 
large brick oven in the yard, a few steps from the house, 



which was used for baking bread; and having caused a 
fire to be kindled in that, they made their servants carry 
out the books and papers, an armful at a time, and throw 
them into the oven. As soon as one armful was burned, 
another was thrown in, until the whole was consumed; 
and the oven was apparently as hot as Nebuchadnezzar's 

About two days after the Battle of Guilford Court 
House, General Cornwallis retreated southeastward 
toward Wilmington, North Carolina in the hope of secur- 
ing recruits. The departure of the British, however, did 
not assure safety for Dr. Caldwell, for the Tories were 
still dangerous. Furthermore, the British army had used 
every item for comfortable living while on the Caldwell 
farm, and Mrs. Caldwell and her seven children were 
forced to seek refuge with friends and neighbors. With 
this situation existing, Dr. Caldwell did not go home for 
several days. General Greene was relieved to have the 
local physician look after the convalescing soldiers until 
they recovered in improvised hospitals. 

In the meantime General Greene and his army 
followed General Cornwallis and his army as far as Ram- 
sey's Mill on Deep River. Then Greene turned swiftly to 
drive the British from the inner country of South 
Carolina. In the fall of 1781 , Cornwallis marched without 
interruption to Yorktown, Virginia. Finding himself 
surrounded on land by American forces and on sea by 
their French allies, the British General on October 19, 
1781, surrendered to the American Commander in 
Chief, General George Washington. 


Courtesy of Harper's New Monthly Magazine 


WHEN THE DANGERS of the Revolutionary War were 
over, Dr. Caldwell returned to his school and religious 
work but was soon called again to public duty. In 1788 he 
was made a member of the North Carolina Committee, 
which met in Hillsborough for consideration of the 
United States Constitution. He is known to have voted 
against its adoption at that time, because, as Caruthers 
wrote in 1842, he was "an advocate for state rights, and 
afraid of putting too much power in the hands of the 

It was almost impossible to know at that time just 
what amount of power should be provided for the top of- 
ficer of the nation to enable him to fulfill the intentions 
for his executive position, because world history furnished 



no example to follow. "Knowing as they did that they 
could put no reliance on the integrity of the men who 
might, in process of time, be placed at the head of the 
nation, it was regarded as a matter of prudence and 
sound policy to confer on the supreme executive no more 
power than would barely suffice for the discharge of his 
duties; but in their circumstances, that was not easily 
defined or ascertained." It adds great stature to Dr. Cald- 
well's perceptive ability and to his balanced power of 
thinking to know how wisely he considered the laws under 
which present and future generations would live. 

IN THE FALL of 1788, David Caldwell turned his thoughts 
toward more concentrated action in the churches. On 
November 5 of that year his name headed a list of 
ministers from North Carolina, South Carolina, and 
Abingdon, Tennessee, who had assembled at Centre 
Church in North Carolina for the purpose of organizing 
the Synod of the Carolinas. Foote in his Sketches of North 
Carolina included the minutes of that organization which 
stated that, "The Synod was opened by the Rev. David 
Caldwell" and "The Rev. David Caldwell was chosen 
moderator." At this first meeting a committee of five 
ministers and five elders was appointed to write a circular 
letter to all the churches in the new Synod. Caldwell was 
named chairman, and Caruthers reported that with joint 
suggestions, "He drew it up in its present form... and it 
does him great credit." 

According to the Rev. Dr. E. T. Thompson, in his 
Presbyterians in the South, at that time there were only 



ten Presbyterian ministers in North Carolina, eleven in 
South Carolina, and six in Tennessee, with more than 
100 preaching points. This "dearth of ministers made it 
impossible for the Synod of the Carolinas to carry on the 
work" satisfactorily. It continued in operation, however, 
until 1813. At that yearly meeting, held in Alamance 
Presbyterian Church of North Carolina, the Synod of the 
Carolinas was divided into the Synod of North Carolina 
and the Synod of South Carolina and Georgia. Thereaf- 
ter Dr. Caldwell, then in his eighty-ninth year, depended 
mostly on his ministering students to carry the work for- 

WHILE THIS CHURCH matter was being adjusted, Dr. 
Caldwell had an opportunity to help Herman Husband, a 
friend dating back to the period of the Regulation 
Movement. Husband had left North Carolina soon after 
the Battle of Alamance, had established residence in 
western Pennsylvania, and for a number of years had 
been a member of his adopted state's legislature. The 
people in his section raised much grain, but had no roads 
for getting it to profitable markets, so they made it into 
whiskey which was easier to carry over packhorse paths 
than were loads of grain. 

In 1791, supported by Alexander Hamilton, Secre- 
tary of the Treasury, a federal excise tax was laid on 
distilled spirits. This tax was unpopular in various parts 
of the country, and in 1794 the malcontents of Husband's 
area broke into open rebellion, known as the Whiskey In- 
surrection of western Pennsylvania. They claimed that 



the excise was unfair, because it taxed them heavily or 
the main product of their farms. The people hoped tc 
have the law repealed by not supporting it, as had beer 
the case of the Stamp Act, and they decided to resist tht 
law by force of arms. 

This situation was the first serious test of national 
strength under the new United States Constitution, and 
President Washington issued a proclamation com- 
manding the people to cease such a disloyal action; and 
he also sent a commission to try to get the rebellious to 
obey the law. Failing in these efforts, he called upon the 
Governors of Pennsylvania, Maryland, New Jersey, and 
Virginia for troops, and in a short time an army of about 
15,000 militia, led by Washington and Hamilton, was 
marching across the Alleghanies to meet the unhappy 
citizens. Hamilton advised severe treatment, but 
Washington's level-headed approach prevailed and the 
revolt ended without bloodshed. 

In this connection Herman Husband and seventeen 
other respected men were arrested and tried, but only two 
were convicted, and one of these was Herman Husband. 
Dr. Caldwell's reaction to this situation was just as Dr. 
Frank P. Graham described him at the unveiling of a 
marker in his memory on Hobbs Road: "Something of 
the spirit of Jesus governed his life." Dr. Caldwell was 
planning to go to Philadelphia in the near future and he 
offered to seek Husband's release while in Pennsylvania. 
Some of Husband's friends in North Carolina drew up a 
request for the prisoner's pardon and a long list of worthy 
people signed it; and the famous Dr. Benjamin Rush of 



Philadelphia united with Dr. Caldwell in this effort. 
Caldwell admitted that he thought Husband was a little 
headstrong, but he believed that his intentions were 
right, and he wanted him to be free to express his 
opinions. Various reports on the subject are not clear as 
to exactly how the case was handled, but Caldwell was 
able to aid in securing the pardon of Husband. 

THE FOLLOWING YEAR presented another opening for 
public service. In 1789 the University of North Carolina 
was chartered as the first state university in the nation, 
and when it was to be opened in 1795, David Caldwell 
was offered the presidency of the institution. Though 
"beyond a doubt he was recognized as the leading 
educator of the state," he declined the invitation, first, 
because of his age, and second, because of permanent 
illness in his family. With thoughtful consideration the 
trustees of the institution never forgot Dr. Caldwell's 
unusual ability as an able and dedicated citizen and 
leader, and he was awarded one of three Doctor of 
Divinity degrees bestowed by the University of North 
Carolina in 1810, the first time honorary doctorates were 
granted by that institution. 

LATE IN HIS LIFE, Dr. Caldwell had yet another op- 
portunity to serve his country. Simply stated, in a power 
struggle between Great Britain and France, the United 
States' neutral right to freedom on the high seas was 
violated, and American lives and property were jeopar- 
dized. After the War of 1812 was declared against Great 


Photograph by Ron Smith 

When the Guilford Courthouse National Military Park was established, this impres- 
sive monument was placed in that park in honor of Dr. Caldwell who worked without 
ceasing for American Independence, then lived for the benefit of mankind within the 
new freedom (see page 98) . 


Britain as possibly the worst offender, and Virginia was 
threatened with an invasion by the enemy, a meeting was 
called at the Guilford County Courthouse in 1814 to 
round up volunteers for military service. Because no one 
seemed disposed to join the ranks, in an effort to avoid a 
draft, Dr. Caldwell, then in his eighty-ninth year, was in- 
vited to speak at the Courthouse on the subject of 
enlisting. He took as his text: "He that hath no sword, let 
him sell his garment and buy one." This loyal American 
had lost none of his patriotic fervor, and when he had 
finished speaking, there were more volunteers than were 

HAVING MET this emergency, though he had closed the 
Log College several years earlier, Dr. Caldwell continued 
to instruct privately a number of students as late as 1816, 
when he discontinued his work as a teacher. He did not 
give up his church ministry at that time, however, but 
remained in active religious service until 1820, riding to 
and from his churches on horseback and preaching every 
Sunday unless prevented by inclement weather. 




In ESTIMATING David Caldwell's worthy services, on the 
38th page of his subject's life, E.W. Caruthers called 
special attention to the fact that this North Carolina 
teacher, preacher, physician, farmer, and statesman had 
a self-appointed assistant who was so intelligent, com- 
petent, and faithful that "it would be unpardonable not 
to pay a passing tribute of respect here to the memory of 
Mrs. Caldwell." Eli W. Caruthers knew Mrs. Caldwell 
personally. In fact he lived in the Caldwell home at times, 
and he felt that "for good sense and ardent piety, [she] 
had few if any equals, and certainly no superiors, at that 
time and in this region of the country. In every respect 
she was an ornament to her sex and a credit to the station 
which she occupied as the head of a family and the wife of 
a man who was not only devoted to the service of the 
church, but was eminently useful in his sphere of life. Her 
intelligence, prudence, and kind and conciliating man- 
ners were such as to secure the respect and confidence of 
the young men in the school, while her concern for their 
future welfare prompted her to use every means, and to 



improve every opportunity, for turning their attention to 
their personal salvation ; and her assiduity and success in 
this matter were such as to give rise and currency to the 
remark over the country that, 'Dr. Caldwell made the 
scholars, but Mrs. Caldwell made the preachers. ' " 

Whenever any of the young men became concerned 
about their outlook on life, or felt impressed to undertake 
some special work in the field of religion, their resort was 
to Mrs. Caldwell in preference to anybody else. Those 
who were deeply religious and who had their attention 
turned to the gospel ministry found that their faith was 
increased and their Christian knowledge thus advanced, 
and they were encouraged by her conversation and by her 
example as a Christian, to take advantage of every op- 
portunity that was open to them for improving their lives. 

WHEN RACHEL CRAIGHEAD married David Caldwell in 
1766, he and his future plans were already well-known to 
her. Both of them had lived in Lancaster County, Penn- 
sylvania, and at that time their families had been good 
friends. Indeed, Rachel's grandfather, the Rev. Thomas 
Craighead, "an eloquent and impassioned pulpit orator," 
was pastor of Pequea Presbyterian Church in Lancaster 
County when David Caldwell was a boy. The church of 
David's family was Chestnut Level Presbyterian, but 
exactly how or when the two families became acquainted 
is not clear. Rachel's father, the Rev. Alexander Craig- 
head, being a great admirer of the Rev. George White- 
field, early in his ministry became a follower of the New 



Courtesy of Lancaster County Historical Society 

Rachel Caldwell's grandfather, the Rev. Thomas Craighead, was pastor of this church 
from 1733 to 1737. 

Side division of the Presbyterian Church. He was a 'warm 
and zealous preacher" and was highly respected by his 
congregations which believed as he did. Thus, Rachel 
had been reared in the midst of a deeply religious atmos- 
phere and within a well-educated family of several gener- 

About the time Caldwell was beginning his college 
education around 1750, the Craighead family moved to 
Rockbridge County in Virginia. At that time Rachel, 
who was born in 1742, was old enough to remember a 
handsome young man seventeen years her senior, who 
was politely attentive to the young girl. 



The Craigheads had been in Virginia for about five 
years when in July, 1755, General Edward Braddock, 
commander in chief of the English and American forces 
in the French and Indian War, was defeated in a fierce 
and bloody battle at Fort Duquesne. This battle left the 
Craigheads and their neighbors exposed to the inroads of 
their enemies, and they all fled in different directions. 
The Craigheads did not stop until they reached Mecklen- 
burg County in North Carolina. 

Caruthers later listened to Mrs. Caldwell when she 
was telling her family about the perils and hardships of 
those times. She said that as they went out of one door the 
Indians came in at the other. In other words when they 
left their Virginia home the Indians were close at hand, 
and leaving behind all their property and household 
furnishings, they narrowly escaped with their lives. It is 
now believed that after the war was over they were able to 
recover most of their possessions. 

Little else is known about the Alexander Craighead 
family in Virginia, except that the father was one of the 
organizing members of the Hanover Presbytery of 
Virginia in 1755. Caldwell was later to become a member 
of that church division when he came to live in North 
Carolina, and that connection linked him again with the 
Craigheads. It is thought that in 1764 or 1765 he 
probably renewed his friendship with the Craighead 
family, for Caruthers mentioned that David and Rachel 
had not seen each other for about 15 years. 

Unfortunately there are no records about an inter- 
esting courtship and marriage ceremony. However, 



knowing Caldwell's dedication to his future life's work, it 
may be assumed that both the bride and groom were 
united in the understanding of love, of family responsi- 
bilities, and of their future lives as they would work to- 
gether for the benefit of enlightenment, purpose, and 
progress in their community, their state, and their na- 

AT THE BEGINNING of their lives together, Mrs. Cald- 
well's able attention to the personal needs of the Log 
College students and her ability to discuss prevailing 
situations with her husband made it possible for him to 
devote countless hours to the general distribution of 
knowledge for the good of the community. For example, 
the distressing physical conditions at the time of his set- 
tlement in North Carolina made him consider it his duty 
to give some of his time to the relief of sicknesses among 
the people of the area. Moreover, being a descendant of 
three generations of preachers, she could converse with 
her husband on both the Old Side and the New Side ideas 
of church regulations. She was also completely familiar 
with the trying times of the Regulation Movement, and in 
all available records, she is presented not only as a 
capable wife but also as an able co-worker and a brave, 
level-headed person in times of danger. 

She knew about danger, too, and had the courage to 
face it. From the time the South became the main scene 
of the Revolutionary War, as mentioned earlier, the un- 
disciplined Tories had been more daring. Particularly af- 
ter the 200 -pound reward had been offered for the cap- 
ture of Dr. Caldwell, they had been a constant threat to 



him and his household. Soon after General Nathanael 
Greene arrived in the South in 1780 to assume authority 
of the American army, one late fall day a strange man 
arrived at the Caldwell residence about dark. Dr. Cald- 
well was away from home, but the visitor told Mrs. Cald- 
well that he was an express messenger on his way with an 
important message from General Washington to General 

He quickly added that he was very tired and hungry 
and wished to spend the night where he felt he and his 
message would be safe. Mrs. Caldwell told him that she 
would gladly prepare dinner, but she felt that it would 
not be safe for him to remain during the night. Before he 
had been able to take a bite of the meal before him, he 
heard from outside: "Surround the house, surround the 
house!" He and Mrs. Caldwell found themselves assailed 
by a body of Tories, and Mrs. Caldwell instantly told 
him that he must do just as she directed him, and do it 
promptly. Then bidding him to follow her, she took him 
out of the house at the opposite side from that at which 
the Tories were assembled and by a way not commonly 
used. A large locust tree stood close to the house; and as 
it was still hanging with ripe locusts, and as the night was 
very dark, it furnished a good place of concealment. She 
told him that he must ascend the tree, thorny as it was, 
and conceal himself among the locusts, until he found 
that the men were engaged in plundering the house. 
Then he must trust to his heels and providence for safety. 
He did as she advised and made his escape. For her 
bravery and wisdom in handling this situation, Mrs. 



Caldwell was later given special recognition for her ser- 
vice on behalf of the Americans. 

BECAUSE SO MUCH significance is attached to the period 
around the Battle of Guilford Court House, it appears 
that Caruthers was able to collect more specific stories 
about Mrs. Caldwell at this period in her life than at any 
other time. We are fortunate to have these insights in 
connection with our struggle for American Independ- 
ence. Some especially interesting but tragic series of 
incidents, which took place at the Caldwell home, have 
been carefully preserved for posterity by Caruthers. 

On Sunday afternoon before the Battle of Guilford 
Court House, a group of men rode up to the gate of the 
Caldwell residence and asked for the landlady. Dr. Cald- 
well was at General Greene's camp, but two men of the 
neighborhood had come by to see if Mrs. Caldwell needed 
anything. There was also in the house a single woman 
named Margaret who was living with the family at that 
time. She was a bold, outspoken person and was not 
afraid of anybody; therefore Mrs. Caldwell asked her to 
speak for the landlady. One of the men, who was in- 
troduced to her as Colonel William Washington, an of- 
ficer in Greene's army, asked her to tell him where he 
could find Dr. Caldwell. Margaret replied that she 
believed he was at General Greene's camp. The men then 
said that they had just come from that camp and Dr. 
Caldwell was not there. Margaret then said that if he was 
not at the camp, she did not know where he was. 



The men rode away, but presently some of them 
returned and again asked for the landlady. Margaret met 
them at the gate as before, but they told her that she was 
not the person they wanted to see, that they must see the 
landlady! Mrs. Caldwell then went to the gate, and the 
same man was introduced to her as Colonel Washington. 
Margaret openly disputed the introduction on the scene, 
and after a period of accusations and denials between her 
and the men, the brave woman climbed the fence around 
the Caldwell yard so that she could see quite a distance. 
Across the field she saw soldiers of the British army ap- 
proaching, and she then called to the men at the gate: 
"It's ad — d lie; for there are your Red Coats." 

Mrs. Caldwell had also suspected that they were 
British, and she excused herself and hurried back into the 
house and warned the two men, who were waiting to 
protect her if necessary, to escape as fast as they could 
through the back door. In the meantime she decided that 
the person introduced as Colonel Washington was Lord 
Cornwallis himself. She explained that she knew his facial 
features well, for he had a defect in his left eye. When she 
returned to the gate, she was then told the truth, that 
they were British and must have the use of her house for a 
few days. With that explanation, they took possession of 
the Caldwell house without delay. Later it became known 
that, as Mrs. Caldwell had suspected, the gentleman who 
had attempted to pass himself as Colonel Washington was 
indeed Lord Cornwallis. 

When the British officers demanded the Caldwell 
residence for their headquarters, Mrs. Caldwell "retired 



to the smokehouse where she was confined for two days 
and nights with no other food for herself or her children 
than a few dried peaches, which she chanced to have in 
her pockets. . .Such was her distress that she went at last to 
her own door, and falling on her knees, begged for food 
for her children, but no attention was paid to her en- 

Four of the seven children which she then had were 
too young to know why they were uncomfortable, but the 
mother knew and she again applied for protection to a 
man, who, from his dress, she took to be a person of some 
rank in the army; "but instead of treating her with the 
courtesy which was due to a lady of her standing, he 
cursed her, and told her he did not know what right she 
had to expect favors; for the women were as d — d rebels 
as the men." 

The cries of the hungry Caldwell children were far 
more distressing than the discourteous treatment from an 
enemy soldier, and Mrs. Caldwell did not give up. 
Caruthers reported a pleasant outcome to her third plea 
for help. She approached a well-dressed British soldier, 
whose kindness showed in his face, and told him about 
her distressing situation and the rude treatment which 
she had suffered. He said that "the other man had no 
authority whatever in the camp ; but he assured her that 
if she would let him know what she wanted, it should be 
done, so far as was in his power... and it was so done ac- 

The soldier who had so pleasantly responded was a 
Dr. Jackson, the head physician in the British army. This 



fact, however, was not known, until after the Battle of 
Guilford Court House was over. It was then that Dr. 
Caldwell had the opportunity of becoming acquainted 
with him, while attending the sick and wounded, and of 
thanking him for the kindness he had shown to his wife 
and children. The Britisher then presented a handsome 
walking cane to the American, who later bought Dr. 
Jackson's published book. 

The encampment of the British army extended en- 
tirely across the Caldwell plantation and over a part of 
two adjoining sections of land. When the enemy re- 
moved, after the Battle of Guilford Court House, "Every 
panel of fence on the premises was burned ; every particle 
of provisions carried away; every living thing was de- 
stroyed except one old goose ; and nearly every square rod 
of ground was penetrated with their iron ram rods in 
search of hidden treasure." 

Mrs. Caldwell was a practical religious person, and 
all during the Battle of Guilford Court House she and a 
number of women from the Buffalo congregation met 
at the house of Robert Rankin and spent the greater part 
of the day in prayer. A large number of the women in the 
Alamance congregation of which Mrs. Caldwell was also 
a part spent the day in the same way at the home of one of 
the elders. When Caruthers was confronted with opinions 
about things for which he had no facts, he carefully wrote 
that he could not be certain about the situation. In this 
instance he wrote simply : "how far the deliverance of the 
country from a powerful and implacable foe, as the result 



of a day's conflict, was in answer to prayer, can be ascer- 
tained only in another world." 

Caruthers wrote that, "On the second day after the 
battle, a number of old ladies [from Alamance and Buf- 
falo] congregations, with a promptness that did them 
credit, went up with a quantity of clothing and provisions 
which they had collected for the sick and wounded. 
When there, their curiosity prompted them to go over the 
scene of action, or a part of it ; and they had not gone far 
until they found two or three of the Americans who had 
been left unburied; ...Dr. Caldwell being on the ground, 
made them a very feeling address; and had the men 
decently interred." Caruthers did not mention the name 
of any one of the ladies, but knowing Rachel Caldwell's 
influence in the community, it is possible that this in- 
cident was later used to strengthen the claim that Mrs. 
Caldwell was a nurse. At that time anyone who gave aid 
to a wounded soldier would have given whatever was in 
her power to give, but it was almost 100 years after the 
Battle of Guilford Court House when a nurse as we know 
her today became active in the Greensboro area. 

AFTER THE BATTLE was over and the British had left the 
area, Caruthers called attention to the fact that the 
Tories continued to plunder the Caldwell residence off 
and on during the following summer, possibly still in the 
hope of capturing Dr. Caldwell. Heretofore Mrs. Cald- 
well had been polite in her dealings with the unwelcome 
visitors, but one day she angrily rose to her own defense. 



While disorderly men were collecting items in her 
home, she noticed that one of the Tories had broken open 
the drawer of a chest in her house and had taken out an 
elegant tablecloth, which she had received from her 
mother when she first went to housekeeping. It was very 
valuable to her for memory's sake, and she grabbed it and 
held on to it until there was quite a struggle between her 
and the Tory. When she realized that his physical 
strength was greater than hers, she turned to the group 
and with her eyes firmly fixed upon them, she appealed 
to them as honorable men. She asked them if they had 
wives or daughters whom they respected, and if so, for 
their sake, would they treat other women with more 

One of the group stepped forward and said, "Yes, he 
had a wife and a fine little woman she was, too; and Mrs. 
Caldwell should not be treated so rudely anymore." The 
man let go of the tablecloth, but another took Dr. Cald- 
well's rifle. 

A number of years later this rifle stealer was em- 
ployed by Dr. Caldwell to help build his new house.* The 
teacher-preacher "would frequently take an opportunity 
of telling [the man] about a certain Tory who stole his 
gun, describing the thief very minutely. . .and then would 
add, in his peculiar manner, 'he was just about such a 
looking man as you are.' " Caldwell was a master at this 
kind of rebuke, and although it was most tormenting to 

*In connection with a record of the erection of a new residence after the war, it 
should here be made clear that the British did not burn the Caldwell home or the 
Log College. 


Photograph by William A. Roberts Film Company 


As may be observed, this former home of Dr. and Mrs. Caldwell was converted into a 
barn sometime before 1935 when this picture was made. At that time the log 
framework of the house, which was put together by means of wooden pegs, was in 
fairly good condition, but has since given way to suburban development. 

the Tory, it was all done in such good humor that the 
guilty man was never able to defend himself. 

IT SHOULD BE remembered that Mrs. Caldwell lived at a 
time when it was customary for "women to be seen but 
not heard;" and it is surprising that Caruthers included 
as many of her human interest stories as he did in Dr. 
Caldwell's biography. Furthermore, early in that book he 
wrote about her valuable work in connection with the 
Log College students as though it covered the duration of 
the institution. In 1842, about thirty years after the Log 
College was closed, Foote in his Sketches of North 
Carolina added that he learned firsthand from Caruthers 
and some former Log College students how they remem- 
bered her : 



"The influence of Mrs. Caldwell over the students was 
great, and all in favor of religion; on that subject she was 
their confidant and adviser. Intelligent, prudent, kind, 
and conciliating, she won their hearts and directed their 
judgments,... The Rev. E.B. Currie, still living, speaks of 
her as a wonderful woman to counsel and encourage, 
having felt in his own case her extraordinary power, while 
a member of the school. . .Multitudes will rise and call her 




At THE BEGINNING of the 1790s, if Rachel and David 
Caldwell together had made a general report on their im- 
mediate family, they would have listed themselves as the 
parents of nine children, eight sons and one daughter. 
Their names were Samuel, Alexander, Andrew, Martha 
called Patsy, twins David and Thomas, John, Edmund, 
and Robert. The Caldwell parents had ample reason to 
be pleased with their children, for none of them ever 
acted dishonorably. Three sons became ministers — 
Samuel, Alexander, and Andrew — and all were gradu- 
ates of the College of New Jersey. David became a worthy 
physician of Greensboro, North Carolina. Thomas served 
40 years as clerk of the Superior Court of Guilford 
County.* John was at times a school teacher and also 
served four terms as State Senator of North Carolina. 
Robert was a successful business man, and gave much 
attention to the comfort and care of the Caldwell family. 
Andrew, Patsy, and Edmund never married, and Robert 
left no living heirs. In addition to the three sons who had 

* When the system of District Courts first went into operation, there were many ap- 
plications for the job of Clerk of the Superior Court of Guilford County. Judge Mc- 
Coy, a former student at Caldwell's Log College, was the presiding officer who would 



become ministers, there were five grandsons, eight great- 
grandsons, and three great-great-grandsons who had also 
become men of the cloth by 1934 when this count was re- 

In the 1790s a situation developed which brought a 
great and lingering sorrow to the entire family. Patsy, 
Alexander, and Edmund became mentally ill during 
their early adult years. Patsy's parents believed that 
women should be trained for responsible citizenship the 
same as men, and she had been carefully and thoroughly 
educated, even to reading Greek. Moreover, she was 
looking forward to her own happy home life with a 
promising young Presbyterian minister, when at about 
the age of 20 years she became mentally confused. At two 
different intervals her father took her to Philadelphia and 
placed her under the personal care of his friend Dr. Ben- 
jamin Rush. Each time she was trepanned and for 
months she seemed restored to normalcy, but then the 
derangement returned and continued until her death 
more than 32 years later. 

appoint the Clerk of Court. On the day for the appointment the Judge asked his 
assistant Lawyer Cameron to see if Dr. Caldwell was present. Within a short time 
Cameron accompanied Dr. Caldwell into the Judge's room. After a warm greeting 
from his former student, Dr. Caldwell was surprised at the Judge's question: "Have 
you a son qualified for the office of Clerk of this County?" After a moment of solemn 
study, Caldwell replied that he thought not, because none of them had been educated 
in prospect of such employment. The Judge, however, insisted, and Dr. Caldwell 
agreed to go home and look his sons over and give him an answer the next day. This 
conference was not made public, and expectation about the job then became higher 
than ever. Promptly the next day Dr. Caldwell appeared at the Judge's room with one 
of his sons. Saluting the Judge as he turned toward his son Thomas, Caldwell said: 
"Here, Judge, I have done the best I could." Forthwith Judge McCoy conferred on 
Thomas Caldwell the eagerly sought office. 



According to Caruthers, within two or three years 
after Patsy became ill, Alexander went the same way. He 
was considered the most talented one of the family; and 
had been married and settled for several years as a suc- 
cessful minister. Neither he nor Patsy was violent or 
troublesome, but his derangement, like hers, remained 
until his death about 44 years later. 

Some time after Patsy and Alexander became af- 
flicted, the Caldwells' seventh son Edmund "became so 
violently deranged that he was obliged to be confined." 
He was also considered unusually bright, "very promising 
as to talents, scholarship, etc." When he was about six or 
seven years of age, he had had an accident which injured 
the medulla oblongata, and the injury developed into a 
bleeding sore which continued until he reached 
manhood. At that time the affliction healed, and then he 
lost all self-control. With only slight abatements, he thus 
suffered until his death about 36 years later. 

It was during the beginnings of these distressing 
illnesses that Dr. Caldwell was offered the presidency of 
the University of North Carolina. He was at or near his 
seventieth year and confronted with these family 
tragedies, and with the afflicted children at home, he felt 
that he must decline the acceptance of the high honor 
offered him. 

DAVID AND RACHEL CALDWELL accepted their living 
sadnesses with courage and turned their thoughts to the 
prevailing situation of the country. The American 



Revolution had left the evils of war in its wake. Gam- 
bling, heavy drinking, card playing, reveling, swearing, 
cursing, theft, and robbery had alarmed the ministers 
and had given new incentive for pressing toward a 
spiritual awakening. 

In the early 1790s a young minister of the gospel, the 
Rev. James McGready, returned from his advanced 
schooling in Pennsylvania to his parental home in the 
Buffalo Church community. He had been under the in- 
fluence of Buffalo Church and the guidance of David and 
Rachel Caldwell from childhood to manhood, had at- 
tended the Log College, and after his twenty-first birth- 
day had continued his schooling at a Dr. McMillan's Lit- 
erary and Theological School. At Hampden-Sydney 
College the President, the Rev. John B. Smith, a follower 
of Whitefield, conferred on him the degree of Master of 
Arts. And he observed a period of revival meetings in 
Virginia on his way back to North Carolina. For a while 
he rested at the Log College where he became an adviser 
to the students. In his home community he began preach- 
ing at different churches, and Dr. and Mrs. Caldwell 
often attended the services. They, and a host of people 
who were deeply concerned about the condition of the 
country, were greatly pleased with the success of the 
young minister, for in a short time he had started a 
religious revival in North Carolina. 

Although Dr. Caldwell was not exceedingly 
emotional in his personal worship, he was thoroughly 
familiar with evangelical religion and the value of its ap- 
peal to others; and he organized special meetings for its 



promotion. The Separate Baptists, the Methodists, and 
the New Light Presbyterians had also been spreading 
evangelism and had prepared the way for a greater 
religious movement. It is a record of history that the Rev. 
James McGready, an intimate follower of David and 
Rachel Caldwell, became an outstanding revivalist of the 
New World in the late 1700s and early 1800s. 

McGready was an educated gentleman, and he 
prepared his sermons with much forethought and pur- 
pose, but he never read from his manuscript. As the tall, 
handsome man stood before his audience, always neatly 
dressed, his evident sincerity was contagious and people 
began to look inside their own lives. He plainly pointed 
out the waywardness of riotous living and lack of con- 
cern for higher ideals. One Sunday in his young eager- 
ness, this "Son of Thunder," as he was called, pointed a 
finger at some newly- rich, religiously comfortable, dis- 
solute members of the congregation and said: "An un- 
worthy communicant in such circumstances as yours is 
more offensive to Almighty God than a loathsome carcass 
crawling with vermin set before a dainty prince." 

The story has been told that it was not long before 
McGready was criticised by a small group of reactionary 
people. At Stony Creek Church after a few years had 
passed some of his critics took the pulpit and made a bon- 
fire of it near the church and left on the clerk's seat a let- 
ter written in blood, warning him to stop his way of 
preaching or his person would be in danger. McGready, 
unafraid of threats, continued to preach as usual until 
1796-1797, when he became the pastor of Jasper River, 



Muddy River, and Red River Churches in Logan County, 
Kentucky, where his North Carolina friends had settled 
earlier. Within a year he and some co-workers had under 
way the Great Revival, which eventually spread over the 
southern states to Florida, west to the Mississippi River, 
and north into southern Ohio. 

Although before this time there had been both Bap- 
tist and Methodist camp meetings for special gather- 
ings such as conferences, McGready and some of his 
North Carolina co-workers, in connection with this 
revival movement, organized the first annual congrega- 
tional camp meeting in America. This idea helped to 
set in motion a religious enthusiasm which, as reliable 
historians have recorded, had never been witnessed or ex- 
perienced before in the South and early West. 

When news of this religious awakening came back to 
Guilford County, Mrs. Caldwell and three or four other 
women of the Alamance and Buffalo congregations met 
once a week and prayed for a revival in North Carolina. 
Soon they were joined by women, elders, and ministers 
of other churches who fervently sought a spiritual 
"refreshing." Inspired by continuing reports of the suc- 
cessful work of McGready and his followers, this prayer- 
ful, anxious, and solicitous attitude existed for about a 
year, when suddenly a remarkable and powerful thing oc- 
curred—one which set off a movement of tremendous 

It was as if the hand of McGready reached out to 
help the Rev. William Paisley of Cross Roads Church, 
who, assisted by his former teacher, David Caldwell, and 



several young ministers, had preached to his sedate 
congregation and was about to close a communion service 
without noting any manifestation of spiritual blessing 
whatever. He had arisen to dismiss the meeting, but 
because no blessing had come to his people his disap- 
pointment was so great he was unable to speak. Caruthers 
wrote in "Richard Hugg King. . ." : 

All was as still as the grave and every face looked solemn. . .A man, by 
the name of Hodge, happened to be there who had seen something of 
the work in the West and he, rising slowly from his seat, said in a 
calm but earnest voice, "Stand still and see the salvation of God!" 
In five minutes, more or less, scores were crying for mercy. Many 
were struck down, or thrown into a state of helplessness if not of in- 
sensibility... Bating the miraculous attestations from Heaven, such as 
cloven tongues like fire and the power of speaking different lan- 
guages, it was like a day of Pentecost and none was careless or indif- 
ferent... so deeply were the people absorbed... that they could not be 
got away from the place until the shades of evening had closed 
around them. 

Many such meetings were soon underway, the next 
one at Buffalo Church, and interested groups thought 
nothing of going 40 miles to attend them. The Rev. 
William Henry Foote in his Sketches of North Carolina 
tells of 100 people who traveled 50 to 80 miles to be 
present at one camp meeting. At another such gathering 
which lasted for five days there were 262 wagons, besides 
the riding carriages, and between 8,000 and 10,000 in at- 

It seems that one symptom of the Great Revival 
wherever it took hold was known as the "extravagances," 
which involved all sorts of bodily contortions. Samuel 
Ashe in his History of North Carolina included the 



description that "sometimes people's arms, with clinched 
fists, would be jerked in alternate directions with such 
force as seemed sufficient almost to separate them from 
the body. Sometimes all the limbs would be affected, and 
they would be thrown into almost every imaginable 
position, and it was as impossible to hold them as to hold 
a wild horse." 

Caruthers, who accepted revivals as a means of 
spreading the gospel quickly, did not think much of these 
extreme displays; and Caldwell, in a very mild and 
cautious way, discouraged the outward exhibitions. 
However, the overpowering impact was beyond their con- 
trol. Rankin in his Buffalo Church history recorded that 
"all classes and conditions of people — the educated and 
the ignorant, the rich and the poor, the good and the 
bad — were affected." And a thing which marked the 
whole movement was that meetings and people perhaps 
hundreds of miles apart, each unaware of the other, often 
underwent similar experiences. 

One of the most prominent ministers in Piedmont 
North Carolina at that time was Dr. Samuel E. Mc- 
Corkle. At first he would take no part in the meetings, 
would not even attend a service, and viewed with horror 
and some degree of disgust the emotional reactions. Dr. 
Caldwell urged Dr. McCorkle to be present at a meeting 
so that he could witness firsthand and express his per- 
sonal reaction to what he experienced. Admitting that he 
felt Caldwell's approach was right, McCorkle agreed to 
go to one meeting. He carefully listened to one sermon 
and was half way through another when he said : "Surely 



this must be the work of God, and marvelous in our 
eyes... I can but say, 'O Lord, as the heavens are higher 
than the earth, so are Thy thoughts above our thoughts, 
and Thy ways above our ways.' " 

Not everyone, however, was religiously moved. On 
the contrary, there were scoffing, ridicule, and open 
defiance of the meetings by some. There were liquor ped- 
dling, drunkenness, and other abuses. There were those 
who chose to look upon the camp gatherings as a sort of 
entertainment — "tares among the wheat," Caruthers 
called them. Furthermore, there were some honorable, 
God-fearing people who withdrew from the Presbyterian 
churches which encouraged revivals. Despite these disad- 
vantages, the annual camp meeting revivals continued 
almost to the outbreak of the Civil War; however, the 
"exercises," which ministers neither understood nor con- 
sidered to be necessary for deep religious experiences, did 
not last that long. 

To be a part of this religious awakening, one did not 
have to belong to any particular sect. The Great Revival 
spirit spread quickly among the Baptists, Methodists, and 
some other denominations as well as Presbyterians. Dr. 
Caldwell was a broad-minded religionist, as is manifested 
in his interest in every segment of society. He lived his 
religion in all aspects of life as they came to his attention ; 
and he recognized the value of religion in the different 
denominations. Having this outlook, it is not surprising 
that he invited other religious bodies to attend his 
meetings. Upon one occasion there were 23 ministers, 
representing six different faiths. Of these joint religious 



gatherings, Guion Johnson in her Ante-Bellum North 
Carolina wrote : 

If the sermon did not stir the congregation, the singing probably 
would. Camp meeting leaders abandoned the usual church hymns 
and composed, sometimes extemporaneously, songs which more 
nearly suited the spirit of the meeting. These songs they called 
spirituals. Many Negro spirituals have been based upon them. The 
slaves so readily took over the meeting spirituals and adapted them so 
well to their own use that many, unfamiliar with the camp meeting 
movement, think that they are wholly original with the Negro race. 

As attendance at these joint assemblies grew, each 
church began to establish its own meetings and regular 
camping grounds. Although the Great Revival had 
reached its height in North Carolina by 1804, the revival 
movement continued to break out in cycles. In 1833 all 
the Presbyterian churches in Guilford County, including 
Greensboro's First Presbyterian Church, had a union 
camp meeting ground of about 20 acres. In 1842 the 
Greensborough Patriot wrote of unusual seriousness 
having "overspread the people of town and neigh- 
borhood; ...Scarcely any individual speaks of the subject 
with levity; ...Divine service is performed daily in the 
churches and numerously attended." 

In 1842, reflecting upon the revival movement up to 
that time, Eli Caruthers concluded that "these revivals, it 
is generally believed, have had a greater effect upon the 
condition of society, in producing good order and a 
christian spirit and deportment, than all other causes 
combined." Historian Ashe drew this conclusion of the 
Great Revival : 



Separated from its objectionable experiences the revival during these 
early years of the century was most salutary in its effects, reforming 
the life of the people, and instilling and emphasizing religious and 
moral priciples, and promoting domestic happiness. 

And historian Guion Johnson in her Ante-Bellum 
North Carolina appraised the Great Revival, of which 
McGready was the leader, assisted by a little band of 
North Carolina ministers, in this way: 

It was confined chiefly to the Methodist, Presbyterian and Bap- 
tist churches, although at the beginning some Lutheran, German 
Reformed, and Episcopal ministers in the State also attended camp 
meeting. Despite its extravagances, the revival was a liberalizing 
movement. For a while it turned men's thoughts away from creed. It 
focused attention upon the individual. It joined with forces in other 
fields of thought to emphasize the welfare of mankind. Churches 
progressed beyond the narrow limits of their colonial interests. 

The interpretations of these and other historians of 
like mind are borne out through positive and concrete 
evidence on every hand. Content at first to come together 
for expression of faith through worship, the continuous 
swell of numbers and spirit in religious denominations 
began to resolve itself also in tangible proof of faith 
through works; and soon the inward emotions began to 
be translated into academies, colleges, orphanages, Sun- 
day School buildings, and the sharing of Christianity 
through missions among peoples of the other parts of the 
world. These developments have unquestionably followed 
the Great Revivial movement over the South and early 

It remains, then, that the Rev. James McGready, the 
most outstanding student and co-worker of David and 
Rachel Caldwell, a member of the devout Old Side Buf- 



falo Presbyterian Church, with the outlook of the New 
Side Alamance Presbyterian Church, engendered the 
living, thriving spirit of all these dynamic forces into the 
development of the New Nation. 

THE INFLUENCE OF this tremendous awakening, though 
gradually being transferred into institutions for works of 
practical living, continued through the waning years of 
David and Rachel Caldwell. With the Revolutionary War 
and American Independence won, with the lingering 
problems of the War of 1812 turned into the "Era of 
Good Feeling," and with over 50 of their own trained 
ministers and many, many more of their worthy students 
promoting their own lives for the benefit of mankind, 
David and Rachel Caldwell were able to spend their last 
days in peace. 

In 1822 at the age of 97, Dr. Caldwell wrote his last 
will and testament, and today his handwriting is as clear 
and smooth as that of any young man. An enlarged copy 
of his signature is reverently repeated as the title of this 
summary of his life, and it illustrates his splendid, Spen- 
cerian style. In this document he thoughtfully provided 
for the comfort and well-being of every member of his 
family, as well as other members of his household, and 
placed over them his eternal blessings. 

Thereafter, his life's mission fulfilled, his work well 
done, he relaxed into his natural cheerfulness. During his 
last two or three years he did not leave his farm or his 
home. It was noticeable that he slept more than had been 



his usual habit, but Caruthers personally observed that, 
"when awake he was always ready to engage with a friend 
or an acquaintance in cheerful and profitable con- 
versation." In such discourses "his family had often heard 
him say in the latter part of his life, that he had never 
once thought of being rich; but that his whole concern 
had been to be useful to the world." Yet, in order to reach 
this goal he left few descriptive words or inspiring 
thoughts to be followed, for his entire course through 
life had been characterized by doing rather than by 

During his last days, though naturally less vigorous, 
he was never known to utter a word of complaint or to 
speak with the least indication of impatience. He con- 
stantly assured those around him that he was neither sick 
nor in pain. Then with no indication of disease, but by 
the known process of nature, his family knew that he was 
dying, because he breathed more slowly and more deeply 
than usual. There was no struggle. No limb moved. No 
facial expression changed. And remaining perfectly sen- 
sible and able to talk until nearing his final breath, he 
silently went away as easy as the passing of a summer 
breeze. It was the day of August 25, 1824, seven months 
before his hundredth birthday, when physical life depar- 
ted from this unusual man. 

His body was buried in the cemetery alongside Buf- 
falo Church where he had served as pastor for almost 60 
years. Here an appropriate marble monument was placed 
to mark his final resting place. Caruthers concluded, "A 
small slab, with a suitable inscription, in memory of Dr. 



Caldwell, was also inserted in the graveyard wall at 
Alamance Church by the people of that congregation; 
but the services which he rendered to the church and to 
the country are his best and most enduring monument." 

APPARENTLY HAVING complete satisfaction that her 
husband in his will had thoughtfuly provided for their 
family, as Mrs. Caldwell advanced in years she talked at 
times about approaching death as a pleasant experience. 
After Dr. Caldwell's death it was difficult for her to feel at 
home without him ; but then she confessed that she felt it 
was wrong for her not to be entirely resigned to the Divine 
Will. Still, she was never able to put aside her impatience 
and anxiety to be with her husband, for almost the last 
words she spoke were: "O, what hinders, that his chariot 
wheels delay so long!" 

Caruthers wrote that she retained her senses and all 
her faculties until the last breath, and a more impressive 
scene than that of her deathbed is seldom witnessed: 
"Only an hour or two before she died, having perceived 
they were preparing to make her burying clothes, she 
gave, with perfect calmness and pleasantness, directions 
respecting certain parts of them; and [she] seemed to be 
as attentive to the comfort and welfare of those about her 
as if she had been a ministering spirit sent from heaven 
for the purpose. Supper being announced, while her 
friends were all around her, some one observed, in a low 
voice, that they had better not all go at once; but she 
heard it and told them all to go and come back again as 
soon as supper was over. When they returned she had her 



servants all called in, and mentioned by name the old 
woman who had nursed most of her children. Finding all 
present as she wished, and feeling that the time of her 
departure was come, with quite a strong voice, she called 
upon her son Alexander, to engage in prayer, which he 
did. While all were thus engaged and on their knees, she 
asked her youngest son, who sat by her, for some water. 
Having raised up and taken it when presented, she sank 
back into the bed again ; put up her hands and closed her 
own eyes; then folded her arms across her breast; and 
with the next breath meekly resigned her spirit into the 
hands of her Redeemer." 

It was the evening of June 3, 1825, when Mrs. Cald- 
well, known as an amiable, pious, prudent wife, mother, 
and neighbor, peacefully passed into eternity. On the 
following day her remains were interred beside those of 
her husband in the Buffalo Church Cemetery, and here 
was placed a marble gravestone with an appropriate in- 
scription to mark her final resting place. 

$ 5fc ijc Sj! Sf! % 

Almost exactly 150 years have passed since these two 
exceptionally remarkable people were setting standards 
for the development of a growing nation. Their high 
ideals have never been forgotten, and today with the 
David Caldwell Log College, Inc., in action to perpetuate 
them forever on the land where they lived and worked 
together, their spirits seem to be present in a resurrection 
of power and inspiration. 


Photograph by Ne 





IT IS AN INTERESTING fact that there were two men 
named Andrew Caldwell who lived as contemporaries in 
Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, from the 1720s to the 

1750s. One Andrew married Martha and the 

other married Ann Stewart. For a century and a half 
since the death of the Rev. David Caldwell in 1824, dif- 
ferent writers have given first one Caldwell couple and 
then the other as his parents. Not to be longer confused as 
to whether Andrew and Martha Caldwell or Andrew and 
Ann Stewart Caldwell were the parents of the Rev. David 
Caldwell, the author of this book made a special request 
of the Lancaster County Historical Society, Lancaster, 
Pennsylvania, for all the available records, particularly 
the Wills if possible, in connection with the two Andrew 
Caldwells. Among the great collection of rare and timely 
information sent by Laura G. Lundgren, Librarian of the 
Lancaster County Historical Society, were the two An- 
drew Caldwells' Wills, which clearly untangle the long- 
disputed story : 

Andrew Caldwell 

IN THE NAME OF GOD, AMEN! The twenty second day of 
May, Anno Domini 1749. I Andrew Caldwell of Lecock, 



in the County of Lancaster & Province of Pensilvania, 
inkeeper, being stricken in years & that all flesh must 
yield unto death when it shall please God to call, do 
make, constitute, ordain, & declare this my last will & 
testament, in manner & form following, Revoking & an- 
nuity by these presents, all & every testament & testa- 
ments, will & wills herunto by me made & declared, 
either by word or by writing, & this to be taken only for 
my last will & testament & none other & first being peni- 
tent & sorry from the bottom of my heart for my sins past, 
most humbly desiring forgiveness for the same, I give & 
commit my soul unto Almighty God my Saviour & Re- 
deemer in whom & by the merits of Jesus Christ, I hope & 
believe assuredly to be saved, & to have full remission & 
forgiveness of all my sins & that my soul with my body at 
the general day of resurrection shall arise again with joy 
& through the merits of Christ death & passion, possess & 
inherit the kingdom of Heaven, prepared for his ellect & 
chosen, & my body to be buried in such place where it 
shall please my executors hereafter named to appoint. 
And now for the setling of my temporal estate & such 
goods chattels & debts as it hath pleased God far above 
my deserts to bestow upon me, I do order, give & dispose 
the same in manner & form following, [that is to say, ] 
First, I will that all those debts & duties as I owe in right 
or conscience to any manner of person or persons what- 
soever shall be well & truly converted & paid or ordained 
to be pd by my exetors hereafter named, 
Item, I give & bequeath unto my well beloved wife Ann 
Caldwell the house & plantation and a tract of land 
belonging to the same containing three hundred acres, & 
also another tract of land containing one hundred acres 
& now lying on the south mountain. To have & to hold to 
her during her natural life & after her decease to desend 
unto my youngest son Andrew Caldwell, his heirs & 



assigns forever, he paying the sum of thirty pounds 
lawfull money of the sd Province within one year next af- 
ter my sd wife decease unto my grandchildren by my 
daughter Rachel & ten pounds to my grand child Ann 
Croswell, ten pounds to Andrew Croswell & ten pounds to 
Charles Croswell, and if any of the sd children hapen to 
dye before the time of payment, his or her share shall fall 
unto the other two living, & if two of them happen to die 
all shall fall & be pd unto the longest liver of my three 
grand children aforesaid, 

Item, I give & bequeath unto my granddaughter Hannah 
Croswell the sum of ten pounds of like lawfull money 
aforesd to be pd unto her within two years next after my 
decease by my exetor hereafter named, 
Item I give & bequeath unto my eldest son Robert Cald- 
well the sum of five shillings sterling money or current 
money of Great Britain to be pd unto him immediately 
after my decease, 

Item, I bequeath unto my son Andrew Caldwell my sword 
& my fouling piece or gun, to be delivered unto him im- 
mediately after my decease, 

Item, I give & bequeath unto my daughter Rachel 
Croswell the sum of five shillings current money of Great 
Britain to be pd unto her immediately after my decease. I 
also give unto my sd daughter Rachell Croswell my great 
looking glass to be delivered unto her immediately after 
the death of my well beloved wife, but to the use of her 
during her life, 

Item, I give & bequeath unto my son Andrew Caldwell 
my chest & drawers to be possessed by him after the 
decease of my well beloved wife, but to her proper use 
during her life, 

Item, I give & bequeath unto my well beloved wife Ann 
Caldwell, all the rest of my goods, cattle, chatties, & all 



debts & demands by books, specialitys ungiven un- 

And I do nominate appoint & ordain her to be my sole 
exctrix of this my last will & testament. In Witness 
whereof I have hereunto set my hand & seal the day & 
year first written at the beginning, 

Andrew Caldwell (Seal) 

Published, signed & sealled by the testator in 

the presence & sight of us, 

Jos Croswell, John Scott, Tho. Edwards, 
The 28th Deer 1752. Before me the subscriber 
came John Criswell & John Scott, two of the wit- 
nesses to the within written will, and on their cor- 
poral oaths did declare and say that they were 
present and saw and heard the within named 
testator declare and say that they were present and 
saw and heard the within named testator Andrew 
Caldwell, sign, seal, publish, and declare the 
within writing as and for his last will and 
testament, and that at the doing thereof he was of 
sound and disposing mind, memory and un- 
derstanding, according to the best of their 
knowledge and belief, 

Before Thos Cookson D.R. 



Andrew Caldwell 

IN THE NAME OF GOD AMEN the twenty third day of June 
One thousand Seven hundred fifty and Seven I Andrew 
Caldwell of the Township of Drumore in the County of 
Lancaster farmer being very Sick and Weake in Body but 
of perfect mind and memory thanks be given unto God 
therefore Calling unto mind the mortality of my Body 
and knowing that it is appointed for all men once to die 
do make and ordain this my last Will and Testament that 
is to say principally and first of all I give and Recommend 
my Soul into the hands of Almighty God that gave it and 
my Body I Recommend to the earth to be Buried in a 
Decent Christian Manner at the Discretion of my Execu- 
tors nothing doubting but at the general Resurrection 
I shall Receive the same again by the mighty Power of 
God and as touching Such Worldly Estate wherewith it 
has pleased God to Bless me in this life I Give Demise and 
Dispose of the Same in the following manner and form 
IMPRIMIS I give and Bequeath to Martha my dearly 
Beloved Wife the fourth part of my Estate Real and per- 
sonal during her life and after her decease the said fourth 
part of the Real estate is to Return to my three Sons that 
is to say to my well beloved Son Alexander and my well 
Beloved Son Andrew and my well Beloved Son John 
which three my well Beloved Sons I likewise Constitute 
make and Ordain my Sole Executors of this my last Will 
and Testament all and Singular my lands Me[f]suages 
and Tennements by them freely to be Possessed and en- 
joyed and I do hereby allow them the said three equally to 
Inherit the Same. [Remember that David gave his three 
younger brothers a quit claim to his share of his father's 
real estate if they would give him the needed financial 



support to take care of his expenses in College (see page 
2).] Item I likewise give and Bequeathe to my well 
Beloved Son David the Sum of Forty Pounds to be paid to 
him by my Executors of the whole of my Estate as he 
stands in need of and not to hurt my Executors And to 
have his living with and of my Estate as formerly during 
his Estate of a Singel life and further I do hereby allow my 
wife at her decease to dispose of her fourth part of the 
Personal Estate as she shall think proper Item and further 
if my well Beloved Wife see's Cause shee may give to my 
well Beloved Son David a Horse and Saddle and I do 
hereby utterly Disallow Revoke and disspell all and every 
other former Testament wills legacies and Bequeathes 
and Executors by me in any wise before named willed and 
bequeathed Ratifying and Confirming this and no other 
to be my last Will and Testament IN WITNESS whereof 
I have hereunto set my hand and Seal the day and year 
above written 

Andrew Caldwell (SEAL) 
SIGNED SEALED published Pronounced 
and Declared by the said Andrew 
Caldwell as his last Will and Testament 
in the presence of us the Subscribers 

Samuel X Pollock 

Andrew McEntire 
Thos. Job 

LANCASTER COUNTY PS. February 14th 1759 Personally 
appeared Before me the Subscriber Samuel Pollock An- 



drew McEntire and Thomas Job the Witnesses to the 
above and foregoing Will and the said Samuel Pollock 
and Thomas Job on their solemn Affirmations and the 
said Andrew McEntire on his Corporal Oath did declare 
and say that they were present and saw and heard An- 
drew Caldwell the Testator within named Sign Seal 
Publish Pronounce and declare the above writing as and 
for his last Will and Testament and that the doing 
thereof he was of Sound and disposing mind memory and 
understanding to the best of their knowledge Observation 
and Belief 

Edwd. Shippen D. Rr. 

Be it remembered 

that on the 14th day of January 1758 
the last Will and Testament of Andrew Caldwell 
deceased was proved in due form of law and Probate and 
letters Testamentary were granted unto Alexander John 
and Andrew Caldwell Executors in the said Testaments 
named they Being first duly Qualified well and truly to 
Administer the said Decedts. Estate and Bring an In- 
ventory thereof into the Registers Office at Lancaster on 
or before the 14th day of March next and also to Render 
a true and Just Account of their said Administration 
when thereto lawfully required. 

GIVEN under my hand and Seal of the said office. 

By me 



A REFERENCE, which has been repeated again and again, 
has placed the Rev. David Caldwell as "Captain Volun- 
teers Continental Army." There were, indeed, two or 
three David Caldwells living in North Carolina during the 
Revolutionary War. In Roster of Soldiers from North 
Carolina in the American Revolution, published by the 
Daughters of the American Revolution, 1932, two men 
had the name "David Caldwell, militia, Salisbury." In the 
Colonial Records of North Carolina, Index, under the 
heading of "Caldwell, David," one Caldwell is included 
among a list of soldiers who were classed as captains in 
1776. In connection with the American Revolutionary 
War, a Captain David Caldwell led a group of soldiers 
against the Cherokee Indians. In another reference under 
the same heading David Caldwell was entered as militia 
captain in 1778. The same heading listed David Caldwell 
many times in connection with reports of the General 
Assembly of the Independent State of North Carolina, 
1788-1790, and he appeared to have been a well-known 

Below that David Caldwell's name in the Colonial 
Records of North Carolina, Index, there is entered the 
name of the Rev. David Caldwell, D.D., with a long list 
of references. These refer to his well-known accomplish- 
ments in various directions, but no entry refers to the 
Rev. David Caldwell as a soldier of any rank. 



SINCE THE DEATH of Dr. David Caldwell in 1824, there 
have been few North Carolina books, papers, and 
speeches written by historians, educators, and religionists 
who have failed to mention the life and work of that in- 
spiring man. In 1842, within less than twenty years after 
his decease, A Sketch of the Life and Character of the 
Rev. David Caldwell, D.D. was written by the Rev. Eli 
W. Caruthers, who alone preserved for posterity an ac- 
count of the many ways Dr. Caldwell served his fellow- 
man. In 1852, Ex- Governor John Motley Morehead wrote 
a brief description of Dr. Caldwell as he had personal- 
ly known him during four years of private teaching. In 
the late 1880s and early 1900s Guilford Courthouse 
National Military Park was established and an impressive 
monument of stone, bearing the words "TEACHER, 
in that park in honor of Dr. Caldwell, who worked 
without ceasing for American Independence which all 
Americans may still enjoy. 

The people then began to give more thought to this 
person who had once been among them. In 1907 Joseph 
M. Morehead, a close friend of Dr. Caldwell's grandson 
David F. Caldwell, delivered on "North Carolina Day" a 
splendid lecture on the services this man rendered in his 
community. The State Superintendent of Public In- 
struction published the speech for the benefit of society. 
In 1922, Burton A. Konkle, in his fohn Motley More- 
head and the Development of North Carolina, empha- 



sized that "at some point in the state. . .a monument equal 
to that of any man in the state ought to be erected" for 
Dr. Caldwell. In 1935, the North Carolina Society of the 
Colonial Dames of America placed in honor of Dr. Cald- 
well a bronze marker, mounted on North Carolina stone, 
at what is now the intersection of West Friendly Avenue 
and Hobbs Road, about one-half mile from the sites of 
Caldwell's home and school. During the same year at the 
same site the Rachel Caldwell Chapter of DAR placed a 
companion marker for Mrs. Caldwell. When Mr. and 
Mrs. Edward B. Benjamin were developing suburban 
Starmount Forest, the late Fielding L. Fry, McDaniel 
Lewis, and James G.W. MacLamroc persuaded them to 
donate a 1.7-acre spot of land about or near where the 
David Caldwell Log College once stood. This space was 
given to the North Carolina Society for the Preservation 
of Antiquities, and that organization turned it over to the 
City of Greensboro. This place is identified on Hobbs 
Road by an historical marker in honor of Dr. Caldwell. 

These various efforts have easily reminded genera- 
tion after generation that the appreciation of Dr. Cald- 
well has grown with the years. As the American Revolu- 
tion Bicentennial Celebration of 1776-1976 was being 
launched, it seemed appropriate for Guilford County 
to feature North Carolina's outstanding man of the 
Revolutionary period. 

With such a thought in mind Sarah Garvin and 
Lollie Holland sought approval for such an undertaking 
from James E. Holshouser, Jr., Governor of North 
Carolina; Robert G. Shaw, Chairman of the Guilford 



County Board of Commissioners; E.S. (Jim) Melvin, 
Mayor of the City of Greensboro; Thomas Z. Osborne, 
City Manager of Greensboro; Jacob H. Froelich, Jr., 
Chairman, and Anita Schenck, Coordinator, respective- 
ly, of the Guilford County American Revolution Bicen- 
tennial Commission; Larry E. Tise, Area Coordinator 
of northwest North Carolina for the North Carolina Bi- 
centennial; McDaniel Lewis; James G.W. MacLamroc; 
May Gordon Kellenberger ; Millie King; Nancy Jen- 
nings; Vail Ellis; Emma Avery Jeffress ; Ethel Stephens 
Arnett; Margaret Hudson; Dr. and Mrs. Raymond A. 
Smith, who owned the major portion of land for the pro- 
posed park; and far too many other interested citizens 
to mention in this brief account. 

Upon receiving enthusiastic support for a David 
Caldwell project, Mrs. Garvin, who had recently served as 
Organizing Regent of the new Col. Arthur Forbis Chap- 
ter of DAR, initiated through that Chapter a movement 
for establishing The David Caldwell Memorial Park. The 
space selected for the undertaking contains about 18 
acres and is supposed to include the sites of the David 
Caldwell home and Log College. 

Feeling assured that the community at large was 
definitely interested in promoting this long-deserved 
memorial, Sarah Garvin, Lollie Holland, and Vail Ellis 
became three directors who acquired the legal document 
for future procedure under the name of David Caldwell 
Log College, Inc. At the initial meeting of the corpora- 
tion, the following officers were selected : 



Mrs. John A. Kellenberger 


President. . . . 

Mrs. Billy E. Holland 

Director . 

. . . Mrs. Noel E. Garvin 
Mrs. Neill Jennings, Sr. 
Mrs. James A. King, Sr. 
. Mrs. James N. Ellis, Jr. 

Mrs. George C. Courtney, Jr. 

Soon thereafter a meeting of especially interested 
citizens of the community at large was called for the 
promotion of this undertaking. On January 6, 1975, the 
City of Greensboro gave a strong vote of approval for this 
movement by matching funds with the David Caldwell 
Log College, Inc., for the proposed park area. The total 
land cost amounts to $180,000.00, and Greensboro 
citizens are encouraged with the promising public sup- 

In 1975 the slate of officers for the David Caldwell 
Log College, Inc., was enlarged for extension of service 
during its campaign years of 1975-76, and the current 
lists stands as follows : 


Mrs. John A. Kellenberger 


President . . . . 
Secretary . . . . 

. . Mrs. Carl O. Jeffress 
. . Mrs. Noel E. Garvin 
Mrs. Alton McEachern 



Treasurer Mrs. James A. King, Sr. 

Corresponding Secretary . . Mrs. George C. Courtney, Jr. 

Director Mrs. Neill Jennings, Sr. 

Projects Chairman Mrs. Nelson Stoops 

Publicity Mrs. Harry Kellett 

Ex-Officio Mrs. James N. Ellis, Jr. 

Mrs. Billy E. Holland 

When all responsibilities and obligations have been 
met by the David Caldwell Log College, Inc. the valuable 
park will belong to the City of Greensboro. The City's 
long-range plans are to extend this initial venture to a 50- 
acre park, to be maintained for historical and 
educational purposes. 



Alamance, Battle of, 23; results 
of 23-25 

Alamance Presbyterian Church, 
organized, 7-9; 11; pastor 
installed, 17; 18; 31; held 
meeting when Synod of N.C. 
was established, 54; New Side 
Alamance Church, 83-84 

American Independence, 24-25; 
31; 65 

American Revolution, 33; 35; 

left evils in its wake, 75-76 
"Another Mix-up," 97 
"An Unusual Confusion," 90-96 
Ashe, Samuel, historian, 79; 


Buffalo Presbyterian Church, 
organized, 7-9; 11; pastor 
installed, 17; committee ap- 
pointed to organize Presbytery 
of Orange, 18; 31; 79; Old 
Side Buffalo Church, 83-84 

Caldwell, Alexander, 1, 2; 40; 94 
Caldwell, Andrew, Jr., David's 

brother, 1, 2; 94 
Caldwell, Andrew, of Drumore 

Township, Lancaster, Penn., 

father of the Rev. David, 1, 

90; Will of, 94-96 
Caldwell, Andrew, of Leacock 

Township, Lancaster Penn., 

90; Will of, 90-93 
Caldwell, Ann Stewart (Mrs. 

Andrew) , 90 ; mentioned in 

Will of Andrew Caldwell of 
Leacock Township, Lancaster, 
Penn., 91 
Caldwell, the Rev. David, birth 
of, 1 ; decided to become a 
Presbyterian minister, 2; pre- 
pared to go to college, 2; 
graduated, 1761, then did 
graduate training, 3; spent 
14 years in preparation for 
life's work, 5 ; invited to pas- 
torates of Buffalo and Ala- 
mance Churches, 5; described, 
6-7, 9; married Rachel Craig- 
head, 11; looked to future, 
14-15; established his Log Col- 
lege, 15-17; installed as pastor, 
17; aided Regulators, 20-25; 
studied medicine, called "Dr. 
Caldwell," 25-27; became a 
farmer, 27-29; worked for 
American freedom, 29; helped 
with the writing of the first 
Constitution of N.C, 30-33; 
served beyond the call of duty, 
33-34; was taken prisoner, 37; 
hid in wilderness, 37, 41; lost 
his best saddle mare, 38-39; 
protected both family and 
friends, 39-40; had dreams and 
went to General Greene's camp, 
41-42; private house occupied 
by British officers, 42, 45; 
library destroyed, 50-51 ; took 
care of wounded soldiers, 51; 
served on N.C. Committee for 


U.S. Constitution, 52-53; aided 
Herman Husband, Whiskey 
Insurrection, 54-56 ; offered 
presidency of UNC-CH, 56, 
75; awarded degree of D.D. 
from UNC-CH, 56; rounded- 
up troop for War of 1812, 56, 
58; stopped teaching in 1816, 
and preaching 1820, 58; "got 
even," with a Tory, 70-71 ; 
endured family sadness, 74-75; 
promoted McGready's Great 
Revival, 75-84; was a broad 
minded religionist, 81 ; made 
his Will, 84; spent last days in 
peace, 84-86; 90, 95, 97, 90- 

Caldwell, Dr. David, Jr., 26-27 

Caldwell, David F., 28 

Caldwell, John, 1, 2; 94 

Caldwell, Martha (Mrs. Andrew) 
mother of the Rev. David, 1, 
90; mentioned in Will of An- 
drew Caldwell of Drumore 
Township, Lancaster, Penn. 

Caldwell, Rachel (Mrs. David), 
12, 41 ; became her husband's 
self-appointed assistant, 59-60; 
married David Caldwell, 60; 
education, 61; 63; moved to 
N.C., 62; gave attention to Log 
College, 63; aided General 
Washington's messenger, 64; 
stories connected with Rachel, 
65-72; turned out of home by 
British, 66-71; prayed during 
Battle of Guilford Court House, 
68; 69; saved her tablecloth, 

69-70 ; estimated by her friends, 
71-72; overcame family sad- 
ness, 74-75; had great concern 
over conditions in U.S., 75-76; 
welcomed James McGready, a 
former Log College student, as 
leader of the Great Revival, 
76-84; led group in prayer for 
a "spiritual refreshing," 78; 
last years, 86-87 

Caldwell, Thomas, 73-74 

Calvin, the Rev. John, 14 

Cape May, where David Caldwell 
taught school and continued 
studies, 3 

Caruthers, the Rev. Eli W., bio- 
grapher of the Rev. David Cald- 
well, 6; 15-16; passim; 33-34; 
passim; on Mrs. Caldwell, 59- 
60; passim 

Craighead girls, Margaret, Agnes, 
Jane, Rachel, Mary, and Eliza- 
beth, housewives, 11 

Craighead, Jane (Mrs. Alexan- 
der), 11 

Craighead, the Rev. Alexander, 

11; 12; 60 
Craighead, Robert, Captain in 

Revolutionary War, 1 1 
Craighead, the Rev. Robert, Sr., 

12; 60 

Craighead, the Rev. Thomas, 

Sr., 11, 12, 60 
Craighead, the Rev. Thomas, 11 
Cross Roads Church revival, 78- 


David Caldwell Memorial Park, 
The, 98-102 


Declaration of Independence, 31 

Deerfield Church, 4 

Drumore Township, Lancaster, 

Penn., 1, 90 
Dunlap, A Mrs., sister of Mrs. 

Caldwell, 37 

Elson, Henry W., historian, 31 

Foote, the Rev. William H., 79, 

Fox, The Rev. George, 14 

Greene, General Nathanael, be- 
came commander of southern 
army, 35 ; camped on Trouble- 
some Creek, 42; decided to 
risk battle for cause of Ameri- 
can freedom, 46; prepared to 
renew battle, 49; drove British 
from South Carolina, 51 

Guilford Court House, Battle of, 
45-51 ; aftermath, 49 

Hamilton, Alexander, Secretary 
of the Treasury, tested U.S. 
Constitution, 54-56 

Hardwick Church, 4 

Howell, Rednap, aided Regula- 
tors, 21-25 

Hunter, James, aided Regula- 
tors, 21-25; withdrew from 
Caldwell's Church, 21, 23 

Husband, Herman, aided Regula- 
tors, 21-25; involved in Whis- 
key Insurrection, aided by Dr. 
Caldwell, 54-56 

Jackson, a Dr., Head of British 

physicians, 49, 67-68 
Johnson, Guion, historian, 82, 83 

Knox, the Rev. John, 14 

Log College, 18 

Lundgren, Laura G., Librarian, 
Lancaster County Historical 
Society, Penn. , 90 

Luther, the Rev. Martin, 14 

McAden, the Rev. Hugh, 17 

McBride, a Mr., 45-46 

McCorkle, the Rev. Dr. Samuel 
E., attended Great Revival 
meeting, 80-81 

McGready, NeillR., 12 

McGready, the Rev. James, grew 
up in Buffalo Church com- 
munity, 76; attended Log Col- 
lege, but went north to com- 
plete his education, 76; most 
outstanding student of David 
and Rachel Caldwell, 83; his 
life was threatened, 77 ; went to 
Kentucky, where he began the 
Great Revival, 77-78; with 
some co-workers, organized 
the first church camp meet- 
ings, 78; power of his meet- 
ings described, 78-84; power 
of his preaching described, 

McMillan's Literary and Theolo- 
gical School, 76 

McNairy, Francis, home used for 
wounded Americans, 49 

Major General Lord Cornwallis, 
36; offered a reward of 200 


pounds for capture of Dr. Cald- 
well, 36; 42; placed British 
officers in Caldwell's house, 45; 
46; claimed the victory at Bat- 
tle of Guilford Court House, 
49; left for Wilmington, N.C., 
51 ; marched to Yorktown, Va., 
in fall and was forced to sur- 
render to Gen. Washington, 
51; 66 

Mansfield Church, 4 

Metuchen Church, 4 

Maidenhead Church, 4 

Mitchell, Adam, 7 

Morehead, John Motley, 1, 6 

Morehead, Joseph M., 28-29; 98 

New Bern, Capital of N.C., 20 

New Brunswick Church, 4 

New Garden, homes used for 

wounded British, 49 
Nottingham Company, 7, 14 

Oxford Church, 4 

Paisley, the Rev. William, 78-79 
Pequea Presbyterian Church, 60 
Presbytery of Hanover in Virginia, 
5, 18 

Presbytery of New Brunswick, 

3, 4 

Presbytery of Orange, 18 

Regulation Movement, organized, 

21; work of, 21-25; 29, 63 
Revolutionary War, 63 
Rumple, the Rev. Jethro, 11 
Rush, Dr. Benjamin, famous 


physician, 26 ; 55, 74 
Smallpox; 42 

Smith, the Rev. John B., Presi- 
dent of Hampden Sydney Col- 
lege, 76 

Smith, the Rev. Robert, 2 

Synod of New York and Phila- 
delphia, 5 

Synod of North Carolina, 54 

Synod of the Carolinas, 53-54 

"Taxation without Representa- 
tion," 30 
Tennent, the Rev. William, Sr., 2 
Thompson, the Rev. E.T., 53 
Tories or Loyalists, 35-36, 63 
Tryon, Royal Governor of N.C., 
built Tryon Palace, 20; dealt 
with Regulators, 20-25; 29 

Vial, Charles L., historian, 47-49 

Walpole, Englishman Horace, 49 
Washington, Colonel William, 
46; 65 

Washington, General George, 

forced British surrender, 51; 

President of U.S., on Whiskey 

Insurrection, 55-56; 64 
Whigs or Patriots, 35-36 
Whitefield, the Rev. George, 2; 

12; 60; 76 
Woodsides, a Dr., relative of Mrs. 

Caldwell, 26 

Courtesy of the Greensboro Daily News 


Mrs. Arnett is the wife of the late Dr. Alex Mathews Arnett, author and Professor 
of History at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She worked with her 
husband on his various books, and since his death has become an author in her own 
right. Her Greensboro, North Carolina: The County Seat of Guilford, published in 
1955, won the Smithwick Award; and in 1956, The American Association for State 
and Local History Award of Merit. Her O. Henry from Polecat Creek, published in 
1962, has been favorably received. Her William Swaim, Fighting Editor : The Story of 
O. Henry's Grandfather, published in 1963, won the Willie Parker Peace Award and 
the Mayflower Cup. From England to North Carolina: Two Special Gifts, published 
in 1964, is an interesting study of two well-known North Carolinians, William Tryon 
and William Sydney Porter (O. Henry). Her Confederate Guns Were Stacked at 
Greensboro, North Carolina, published in 1965, has special appeal for those 
interested in the last days of the Civil War. Her Mrs. James Madison: The 
Incomparable Dolley, published in 1972, is a definitive biography of this outstanding 
First Lady of the Nation. For Whom Our Public Schools Were Named, Greensboro, 
North Carolina, published in 1974, has been enthusiastically welcomed. The Saura 
and Keyauwee in the Land that Became Guilford, Randolph, and Rockingham, 
published in 1975, is an account of the first known people who lived in these North 
Carolina Counties. Now to the above list is added David Caldwell. 

Books by Ethel Stephens Arnett 


A history of the development of this progressive city 


An account of the first half of the short-story writer's life 


The record of a reformer, who inspired state progress 


A tracing of England's illustrious Shirley family, which 
produced William Tryon and O. Henry. 


A report of the last days of the Civil War 


A fully documented biography of the Nation's First Lady 


Brief biographies of thirty-seven worthy persons for whom 
our public schools were named and sketches of ten historic 
places where the schools were named for the communities of 
their location. 


An account of the American Indians who were the first 
known inhabitants of the area. 


An account of this unusual man and his wife Rachel 

Distributed by 
Straughan's Book Shop, Inc. 
Greensboro, North Carolina 27402 


ti\S * "' 

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FEB 2 2 


DEMCO 38-297